Piet Mondrian

Pieter Cornelis Mondrian 1872-1944250px-Mondrian_Broadway_Boogie_Woogie

The style that made Mondrian famous was, in fact, an attempt to save humanity. Millions had died a pointless death in the trenches of the Great War of 1914‒1918. So what was to be done? Mondrian believed that only true, eternal forms would help; only black and white spoke of a universal truth. And being the frugal Dutchman that he was, he grudgingly allowed an occasional small square in the primary colours red, yellow or blue. But no curved lines, because curves were subjective and thus wrong. That left nothing but the unending vertical signifying man’s link to a spiritual world and the horizontal line as a sign of human interaction. Any diagonal suggesting depth was forbidden. A painting being a flat surface, depth would be a lie. Thus Mondrian, who had wanted to go into the Church, became a preacher of truth and simplicity.    Text: Mark Mastenbroek

Picture Lab will present the evolution of  Mondrian’s style and students will will explore the simple power of color, shape and line.

Mondrian Lesson Plan

Piet Mondrian Powerpoint

Lost in the City – Broadway Boogie Animation – A short animated video with Mondrian’s Broadway Boogie Woogie as the star.


Carnegie Picture Lab is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit that focuses on art eduction in Walla Walla valley schools. Read more about CPL here .