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An artist, poet, and playwright, Austrian Oskar Kokoschka (1886-1980) is famous for his expressionistic portraits and landscapes. Expressionism began in Berlin, Munich, and Vienna with the idea of painting things not as they seemed to be, but to express the deep emotions that they provoked in the artist. Kokoschka was considered one of the founders of Expressionism or Expressionist painting. When he painted portraits, the realism was transcended by more abstract expression of man’s innermost feelings. These were often know as psychological paintings that depicted the soul of the subject using dramatic color, violent brushstrokes, and distortion of realistic features. An example of his work is the Portrait of Adolf Loos, which was painted in 1909. (See image)
Arnold Schoenberg (1874-1951), who grew up in Vienna, was both an artist and a musician. He also used Expressionism in his paintings. However, he is regarded as the musician who developed atonal music. He gave up the Romantic style of music that was rich with chromatic melodies, expansive forms, and programmatic content. His works after 1908 were composed with no tonal center, which is known as atonal music. It was considered revolutionary when he rejected tonality in his music. One of his first works of atonal music was a piano solo entitled the Three Piano Pieces Op. 11 of 1909.
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