Theo Kurpershoek was one of the artists – alongside Nicolaas Wijnberg and Herman Berserik – who rejected the exaltation of abstract art by Cobra, Creatie and other movements in the period after 1945. Instead, they chose to continue working in the realistic tradition. Like the members of the Verve painters' collective in The Hague, The Realists, as they emphatically called themselves in the 1950s, wanted to create art that was socially relevant and in step with architecture and applied arts. From around 1968 Kurpershoek began looking to the French painters Bonnard, Vuillard and Valtat. Aside from paintings, he also produced frescoes, mosaics and sculptural reliefs, and was active as a graphic artist.