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1951, acrylic on canvas, 36 x 26", framed
Collection of the Artist
1950s France - Paintings
In 1949, Liles moves to France and studies with Fernand Leger in Paris on the GI Bill. His work from this period incorporates the energy of Abstract Expressionism, the spontaneity of Action paintings, and an intense sensibility of color and emotion.
Liles paints in thematic series, primarily figures and landscapes, with each painting an abstract study in color and composition. A series he calls, "Artisans", consists of portraits of people working. Another group powerfully portrays his own war experience and that of his brother as a POW in Korea. Vivid and fluid, color dominates them all.
Liles also creates purely abstract expressionistic paintings, studies of color, pattern and line. These two contrasting styles, intensely abstract figurative work and linear abstractions, can be seen as a pattern throughout his career, with color as the bridge.