Azure is an oil painting on canvas created by Oscar Bluemner in 1933. Bluemner was a Prussian-born American Modernist painter known for his expressive, lush compositions influenced by Cubism. Born Friedrich Julius Oskar Blümner in Prenzlau, Germany in 1867, he studied painting and architecture at the Royal Academy of Design in Berlin before turning to painting in the early 20th century.
The painting features a predominately blue color palette and is part of Bluemner’s painting diary from July 1933. His diaries indicate that he studied, measured, drew numerous sketches and notes before creating the self-portrait. Interestingly, all of his works are public domain artworks.
Azure reflects Bluemner’s keen interest in the visual, emotional and psychological resonance linked to Modernist art movements. The vibrant blue hues are meant to evoke feelings of tranquility while also providing an element of mystery due to the shrouded face depicted within what appears to be a window or doorway.