Corinne Michelle West
Prolific abstract expressionist Corinne Michelle West often went by the name “Mikael” and “Michael West” to gain legitimacy amongst the abstract expressionists. She rejected a marriage proposal by lover Arshile Gorky (at least six proposals, to be exact) in order to concentrate on her career, emerging as a determined, independent artist. Her explosive brushwork and layered painting style rivaled the brutality and intuitiveness of her male peers. “Where others wrestled with the dubious possibility that there could be an ‘inner self’ to which one must be true, West had no doubts,” wrote art critic Dore Ashton.