This title is Taschen 25 - Special edition! The language of paint, 'Abstract expressionism' refers to the non-representational use of form and color as a means of expression that emerged in America in the 1940s, largely thanks to the innovative work of Arshile Gorky. Interestingly, abstract expressionism is considered to be the first art movement originating in America to have a worldwide influence. Two very different sub-categories of the movement developed: 'action painting' (exemplified notably by Willem de Kooning and Jackson Pollock) and 'color field painting', made most famous by Mark Rothko. Abstract expressionists strove to express pure emotion directly on canvas, via color and especially texture (the surface quality of the brushstroke), by embracing 'accidents', and celebrating painting itself as a communicative action.