Jean Miotte, (b.1926) came of artistic age in the decade after World War II when non-figurative gestural abstraction was emerging on both sides of the Atlantic as the contemporary artistic language. The term, "L'Art Informel," was coined by the French critic, Michel Tapi, to connote "without form." The negation of traditional form, a radical break from established notions of order and composition, was particularly suited to a cultural environment born out of the circumstances of post war Europe where abuse of morals and fascist ideology had led to such horror and destruction.
While Informel is often regarded as the European equivalent of Abstract Expressionism, it is distinguished from its American counterpart, by a loss of faith in progress and the collective possibilities of an avant garde. Rather the artists who came to be grouped as Informel, Jean Miotte, Jean-Paul Riopelle, Emil Schumacher and Kazuo Shiraga among others, claimed an individual freedom embodied in the spontaneity of the gestural brushstroke. Miotte developed a vocabulary of bold, quasi-calligraphic markings whose vaulting, liquid jets and arcs of paint were at once suggestive of the body in motion while at the same time denying corporality. Of prime importance for Miotte was the aspiration for this gestural, abstract language to create a bridge between cultures, to break beyond national barriers of geography or expression to form a truly international language.
The power and transcultural appeal of this painting was soon seen in its international reception. Miotte was invited to exhibit throughout Europe, America, the near and far East long before the concept of globalization was current in artistic terms. But whereas globalization tends toward cultural uniformity, Miotte's work fostered individual dialogue within each culture.
While Miotte's work remains committed to the Utopian aspects of gestural abstraction, he has continued to grow, fighting the repetition of a signature style constantly pushing the boundaries and possibilities of the line, the gesture and the liquidity of paint. His works are included in public collections such as the The Museum of Modern Art, New York, the Musée d'Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris, and Staatsgalerie Moderner Kunst, Munich.