|Birth Day:||September 29, 1909|
|Death Date:||Aug 12, 1989 (age 79)|
As per our current Database, Henri Goetz died on Aug 12, 1989 (age 79).
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He received his arts education at several institutions, including the Grand Central School of Art in New York and the Académie Julian in Paris.
Goetz was born in New York City in 1909. His father ran an electrical plant. He later described his mother as a "quasi-academic" because of the two large parenting books she owned. He began drawing because the books told that a child needs a certain number of hours outside in a day, and as such he was not allowed to come home before six. On one rainy day, he made use of his time by drawing. However, he was frustrated with his clumsy drawing, and tore it up. He later asked his mother to beat him for his failure as an artist.
When he was eighteen, he left home to attend the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge, Massachusetts, where he studied to be an electrical engineer. However, he started taking evening art classes and began to devote his summer vacations to painting instead of apprenticeship. He decided to enroll at Harvard University, also in Cambridge, where he attended art history lectures with the intent of becoming a museum curator. While attending classes in Fogg Museum, he realized he wanted to be an artist. He left Harvard the next year to attend the Grand Central School of Art in New York City, where he enrolled in morning, evening, and night classes. In July, 1930, he decided to leave America to go to Paris, France using money he had saved working as a golf caddie and as an apprentice electrical engineer.
In 1934, Goetz met Victor Bauer, an Austrian artist. Bauer taught Goetz of the existence of Pablo Picasso, Georges Braque, Henri Matisse, and Georges Rouault. Bauer also taught Goetz about left-wing politics, Sigmund Freud's ideology, and avant-garde poetry and music. Through Bauer, he was able to show his first painting in a show in London.
In September 1935, Goetz met Christine Boumeester at the Académie de la Grande Chaumière. Christine was a very shy Dutch painter from Java, Indonesia. Goetz invited her to visit his studio, and she moved in with him several days later. They were married when Christine's parents visited them in Paris. He credited Christine with much of his early development from realism to his more modern surrealist painting style. Around this time he met Hans Hartung, who introduced him to his circle of friends. Through this, he met Fernand Léger and Wassily Kandinsky.
In January 1937, Goetz held his first exhibition at the Galerie Bonaparte with his wife. In 1945, after returning to Paris from several years working with the French Resistance forging documents, Goetz worked with René Guilly on a national radio program called The World of Paris. Ubac covered poetry, and Goetz covered painting. Goetz visited a new studio each week and, through this, met with artists such as Pablo Picasso, Constantin Brâncuși, Wassily Kandinsky, Julio González, Francis Picabia, and Max Ernst. He continued broadcasting for six months before giving his position to someone else.
As World War II began, both Goetz and his wife worked with the French Resistance. They printed leaflets on a simple printing press and created posters to paste on walls around Paris. However, they primarily worked to forge identity documents. In 1939, Goetz, Christian Dotremont, and Raoul Ubac created La Main à Plume, the first surrealist publication under the Occupation.
They moved to Cannes, where Goetz was forced to take on such jobs as cutting sandstone. After the Liberation of Paris in 1944, Goetz and his wife were able to return.
In 1947, Goetz became the subject of a short film by Alain Resnais for the Musée National d'Art Moderne entitled Portrait de Henri Goetz. Goetz showed the film to Gaston Diehl, leading Diehl to commission Resnais to create the film Van Gogh in the following year. Resnais went on to win an Academy Award in 1950 for the Best Short Subject, Two-reel film for Van Gogh.
In 1949, Goetz began to teach a painting class. The class grew so large that he had to move it to the Académie Ranson. After five years of teaching there, he taught for another five years at the Académie de la Grande Chaumière, eventually running two classes due to the number of pupils. He taught at many other schools before finally founding the Académie Goetz. He never charged money for his lessons. Of his students, Goetz said, "Some became excellent artists, and some became fashionable artists, but rarely the same ones became both." In 1968 he accepted a teaching position at École des Beaux-Arts, but the school was closed due to student strikes two weeks later. He then moved to work at Paris 8 University, where he taught painting and etching classes.
In 1968, Christine became ill. She lived with her illness for three years, before dying in Paris on January 10, 1971. After her death, he came across a number of her journals, which he published in a book called Christine Boumeester's notebooks. He prefaced the book.
Citing a lack of patience and methodical ways, Goetz invented carborundum printmaking in the 1960s. In 1968, La gravure au carborundum, a treatise on carborundum printing, was published by the Maeght Gallery. It was prefaced by Joan Miró. Goetz created many abstract prints using this method. Other artists such as Antoni Clavé, Antoni Tàpies, and in particular, Joan Miró, employed carborundum printing in their work. The technique has since been used by printmakers around the world.
After being hospitalized for an illness, Goetz committed suicide by jumping from the fifth floor of the hospital, dying in Nice, France on August 12, 1989.
Currently, Henri Goetz is 111 years, 9 months and 27 days old. Henri Goetz will celebrate 112th birthday on a Wednesday 29th of September 2021.
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