Stephanie Wilde, a self-taught artist whose career has spanned over three decades, is known for her elaborate and exquisitely detailed artwork, which at first glance seems to belong to a different era. It can bring to mind the delicate imagery of the intricate European textile designs of the 14th century, illuminated manuscripts, or Persian miniatures. As contemporary as her subjects are, Wilde’s aesthetic, ideals, and work ethic are descended from earlier artistic traditions, particularly ones which addressed social, spiritual, or philosophical issues. Wilde has the ability to portray biting social commentary while remaining true to a cultivated aestheticism. Her approach to each project is painstakingly methodical, starting with research of fact and lore supported by scientific, historical and literary sources, while relying on symbolism and historical context to inform a complex narrative. Wilde’s technique is also painstakingly exercised, her works incorporating ink, acrylic and gold leaf in a combination of both painting and drawing.
Alyssa Monks earned her B.A. from Boston College and she studied painting at Lorenzo de’ Medici in Florence. She went on to complete her M.F.A at the New York Academy of Art, Graduate School of Figurative Art in 2001. She teaches and lectures at universities and institutions nationwide.
“My intention is to transfer the intimacy and vulnerability of my human experience into a painted surface. I like mine to be as intimate as possible, each brush stroke like a fossil, recording every gesture and decision.”
Monks’s paintings have been the subject of numerous solo and group exhibitions including “Intimacy” at the Kunst Museum in Ahlen, Germany and “Reconfiguring the Body in American Art, 1820-2009″ at the National Academy Museum of Fine Arts, New York. Her work is represented in public and private collections, including the Savannah College of Art and Design Museum of Art, The Center for Contemporary Art, and the collections of Howard Tullman, Danielle Steele and Eric Fischl.
Alyssa has been awarded the Elizabeth Greenshields Foundation Grant for Painting three times, and has been invited to give a TED talk at Indiana University in November 2015. Alyssa Monks is a member of the New York Academy of Art’s Board of Trustees. She currently lives and paints in Brooklyn, New York.
Carlo Maria Mariani is a native of Rome and graduate of the Accademia di Belle Arti. He currently lives in New York.
Mariani creates large-scale canvases that maintain a provocative dialogue with art history and the present. His paintings are a meditation on perfection and harmony-past, present & future. By fusing classical motifs with modern methods, his paintings present a contemporary aesthetic and refuge from mass-media- induced mediocrity and cynicism.
“Mariani is always exploring contemporary trends in painting and frequently absorbs them into his art. Through the filter of his own thought processes and inimitable technique, he adapts and transforms them to further champion the cause of beauty, the sublime, quiet meditation and peace. He performs this inspired transformation in the midst of the 21st century’s decidedly chaotic and abject environment, in which society and nature are constantly under siege. Mariani, perhaps alone among his contemporaries, is nevertheless able to project a sense of idealism and perfection far into the future.” David Ebony
In 1998 Mariani was awarded the prestigious Feltrinelli Prize from the Accademia dei Lincei in Rome, for lifetime achievement in painting.
Carlo Maria Mariani’s work can be found in private and public collections throughout the world, including: The Guggenheim Museum, New York; Lincoln Center, New York; The Tate Gallery, London, England; Frye Museum, Seattle, Washington; The Civic Museum of Art, Milan, Italy; Groninger Museum, Groninger, Netherlands; Etude De Maître, Charbonneaux, France; Nelson Atkins Museum of Art, Kemper Collection, Kansas City, Kansas; Kunstsammlugen-Schlossmuseum, Weimar, Germany; Università degli Studi di Parma, Flash Art Museum, Trevi, Italy; Museum of Modern Art, Rome, Italy; The Contemporary Museum, Honolulu, Hawaii; Guild Hall, East Hampton, New York; Library of Congress, Washington D.C.; The Bellagio, Las Vegas, Nevada; Collection Borghese, Rome, Italy; The Bulgari Collection, Rome, Italy; Millenium Hotel, New York; Rosewood Collection, Dallas, Texas; The Cresent Collection at the Phillip Johnson Building, Dallas, Texas; Banca d’Italia, Rome, Italy; Foundation Cassa di Risparmio, di Foligno, Italy; Mougins Museum of Art, Mougins, France; Museo di Palazzo Forti, Verona, Italy; Franklin Mint, Philadelphia, Pensylvania; The Resnick Collection, Los Angeles, California; The Steve Wynn Collection, Dallas, Texas; Mikado Film, Rome, Italy; Fondazione Maramotti Museum, Reggio Emilia, Italy; The Eric Clapton Collection, London England.
An American artist working in Italy for the last fifteen years, Alan Feltus is inspired by classical antiquity but re-creates his own unique neo-classical style. As a result, old masters assume a pivotal role in his work as both inspiration and muse, replacing traditional life models. Alan Feltus studies these artists’ masterworks, blending their observations of the past with his own ideas on contemporary relationships.
Depicting relationships is at the heart of Alan Feltus’ imagery. Whether portraying husbands and wives, siblings, lovers, or friends, he communicates feelings of sadness, dismay and loneliness by isolating figures and casting them in his enigmatic dramas. Seeking to express the inexpressible, he uses body language as a tool. As is true in early Italian Renaissance paintings, Feltus’ figures rarely seem to direct their eyes towards the viewer. Women and men gaze longingly or suspiciously through dimmed or large, turned eyes, making them appear perplexed. He illustrates their hands so that they appear to be clutched or reaching out, though they never are successful at reaching another person. Bodies are postured awkwardly so that they appear aloof and frozen in a moment. All these elements help Alan Feltus render the complexities of emotion.
Born in Washington, DC in 1943, Mr. Feltus studied at the Tyler School of Fine Arts and later received a B.F.A. from Cooper Union in New York and an M.F.A. from Yale University. He has received many awards for his work, such as a Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant in Painting, the Augustus Saint-Gaudens Award from Cooper Union, and the Raymond P. R. Neilson Prize from the National Academy of Design.
Alan Feltus has had one-person gallery exhibitions in New York, Los Angeles and Washington D.C., as well as Chicago, San Francisco, New Orleans and Rome. His work has been included in exhibitions at the American Academy in Rome (New York and Rome), The Joseph H. Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden (Washington, D.C.), The National Academy Museum (New York), and the National Museum of American Art in Washington, D.C.
He has also been commissioned by the American Medical Association in Washington, D.C., and The Montana Building in New York. In 2001, he received the Raymond P.R. Neilson Prize given by the National Academy of Design in New York. He is also included in several important public collections such as The Arkansas Art Center in Little Rock, AR, The Bayly Museum in Atlanta, GA, The Corcoran Gallery of Art and The Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden in Washington, D.C., The National Academy of Art in New York, NY, The Oklahoma City Art Museum and the Wichita Art Museum in KS.
Alan Magee, born in 1947 in Newtown, Pennsylvania, attended art school in Philadelphia and, in 1968, began working as an editorial and book illustrator in New York. Among his regular clients were Time Magazine, The Atlantic, Playboy, New York Magazine, The New York Times, McCall’s, and Avon, Ballantine, and Simon and Schuster Books. His illustrations received numerous awards from the Society of Illustrators, Communication Arts magazine, and the Art Directors’ Clubs of Los Angeles, Chicago and New York. Magee’s illustrations were honored with Playboy’s Annual Editorial Award in 1977, and an American Book Award in 1982.
Magee has received awards for his painting from the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters and the National Academy of Design. Several television documentaries have been made about his work including the Maine PBS production, Alan Magee, Visions of Darkness and Light, and Maine Masters: Alan Magee. Magee has been interviewed on Voice of America Radio, Monitor Radio in NY, WHYY in Philadelphia, Pacifica Radio in San Francisco, and on WERU in Maine
Forum Gallery has represented Alan Magee since 2001. The artist was the subject of a major one-person exhibition in 2003–04, presented by the Farnsworth Art Museum, Rockland, ME, which traveled to the James A. Michener Art Museum, Bucks County, PA, The Museum of Texas Tech University, Lubbock, TX and The Frye Art Museum, Seattle, WA. The accompanying book has sold more than 3,000 copies. A one-person exhibition: Alan Magee: From the Underground River, was presented by the Center for Maine Contemporary Art in 2006. His work has recently been included in exhibitions at the American Academy of Arts & Letters in New York, the New Britain Museum of American Art in New Britain, CT, and the Brandywine River Museum in Chadds Ford, PA
Magee’s works can be seen in many public collections including The Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, The Art Institute of Chicago, the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, the Portland Museum of Art, the Farnsworth Art Museum, Rockland, ME, Arkansas Art Center, the DeCordova Museum, Lincoln, MA, Huntington Museum of Art in WV, Newark Art Museum, and the Columbus Museum of Art, OH. His work is included in the private collections of Mobil Oil, The Atlantic Richfield Co., Lucasfilm Inc., Cargill Corporation, Continental Grain, the Bank of Japan, the Union Trust Bank, The Janss Collection, and The collections of Billy Wilder, Henry Fonda, Chermayeff & Geissmar, Arnold Newman, Johnny Carson, Mike Nichols and Diane Sawyer, Nicholas Cage, Morley Safer, Burton and Deedee McMurtry, and the Richard and Jalane Davidson Collection of American Realist Drawings, among others.
Melamid (b.1945) is long-known in the art world for his partnership with fellow Russian artist Vitaly Komar, with whom he founded the Soviet Realist Pop art movement, Sots Art, which satirized Soviet Socialist Realism. During their almost 40 years of collaboration which ended in 2003, Komar and Melamid were noted as revolutionaries and, at times, rebels. Their work was often compared to that of Pop artists Andy Warhol and Roy Lichtenstein.
In 2003, the duo decided to explore individual careers. Around this time, Melamid’s first-born son, Dan, introduced him to the world of hip-hop, which included his clients and close friends Whoo Kid and 50 Cent. Melamid was intrigued by hip-hop society because of its rich history and world appeal, and began to paint the hip-hop portraits that became his first solo exhibition.
Alfred Maurer (1868–1932) was an important American Modernist artist who studied at the National Academy of Design (New York) in 1884 and at the Acadamie Julian (Paris) in 1897. He worked in Paris for 14 years and was the first American painter to adopt the Fauvist style he had seen there, particularly at the home of his friends, Gertrude and Leo Stein. In 1914 Maurer returned to America with a unique painting expression that combined cubist abstraction, bold portraiture and high color. This approach would serve him for the rest of his life. He exhibited his work in New York at Alfred Stieglitz’s Gallery 291 and in the 1913 Armory Show.
Dissatisfied with his life and acceptance as an artist, Alfred Maurer committed suicide in New York in 1932. A retrospective of his work was held, forty years after his death, in 1973 at the National Museum of American Art. Works by Alfred Maurer can be found in every major museum collection of American Art, and in private collections throughout the world.
A Forum Gallery artist since 2001, Andrea J. Smith was born in Australia and attended the Melbourne College of Advanced Education in Victoria, Australia from 1983 to 1986, and went on to Florence, Italy to receive a certificate of drawing and painting at the Florence Academy of Art.
While dividing her time between New York, Florence, and Australia, Smith continues to study and explore classical painting techniques as they intersect with contemporary subject matter. Both figurative and still-life, Smith’s paintings evoke the old masters in both technique and palette.
Smith is a founder of The Harlem Studio in New York City, a space in Manhattan where she can practice her own work while conducting classes based on Charles Bargue’s and Jean-Léon Gérôme’s Cours de Dessin, developed in the 1850s.
She has received numerous grants and scholarships, and has participated in exhibitions in Italy, Germany, Australia, Canada and the United States. Her work is featured in private collections from New York to California and Chicago to Texas.
Anthony Mitri’s meticulous, life-like charcoal drawings, executed using exceptional concentration, patience and skill, portray the French countryside, urban Paris, New York City, and the artist’s native Cleveland, OH. Each charcoal is the representation of a personal, emotional experience bound to the location depicted.
Photographs which Mitri takes at each location help him recall his time spent in such places. These images also serve as guidelines, enabling him to outline the compositional elements of his subjects by way of an under-drawing, after which lighting and the creation of an appropriate mood become his primary focus.
More than photographs, however, Mitri’s own indelible memories of each location serve as his primary source material. This could include certain sounds and smells, as well as all the related circumstances in his life which colored his perceptions and influenced his emotions at that particular time and place.
The artist has said that “The experience of having been there is crucial to these pictures; the process of rendering a drawing becomes an extended moment of memory, the finished piece, a memoir in charcoal”. In describing his feelings about the work, Mitri quotes the poet William Wordsworth who wrote of an “emotion recollected in tranquility”.
Anthony Mitri attended the Cooper School of Art in Cleveland, Ohio, and went on to the Athenaeum School of Fine Art in La Jolla, California, after which he has been the subject of numerous solo exhibitions in Southern California, New York City, and in France. His work has also been included in countless group exhibitions and art fairs, examples of which can be found in the collection of the Arkansas Arts Center, the on-line Grantee Image Collection of the Pollock-Krasner Foundation as well as numerous private collections throughout the United States and Europe.
Born in Canandaigua, upstate New York, Arthur Dove (1880–1946) is credited as being the first innovative abstract painter in America. Many of his abstractions showed obvious Oriental influence and were derived from landscape and organic subjects with color used freely and calligraphic line emphasizing energy or force. Generally his method was to make watercolor sketches outdoors and later, oil paintings in his studio.
He also made assemblages from a variety of materials including aluminum, tin, copper, glass, wood, fabric, and found objects. Some were three dimensional like sculpture, and he was a meticulous craftsman.
In 1903, Dove traveled to Paris, where he met Alfred Maurer, who was to be his best friend for the remainder of his life, and through him moved in art circles that included Matisse, Picasso, and Cezanne. His style at that time was impressionist, but he and Maurer worked to reduce impressionism to larger areas of pure color in the manner of Matisse.
He returned to New York in 1909 and exhibited with Alfred Steiglitz’ Gallery 291 of avant-garde artists. The American public’s first exposure to Dove was in a 1912 exhibit at Gallery 291 and shocked many viewers who regarded him as a deranged modernist. Steiglitz friendship and encouragement proved extremely valuable to Dove who also moved in avant-garde art circles with John Sloan, William Glackens, Robert Henri, Alfred Maurer, and Georgia O’Keeffe.
Although critics began to recognize his work, the public did not respond during his lifetime, and few of his works sold.
His cheerful personality was reflected in the tranquil mood of his work. He died of a heart attack in November, 1946.
Auguste Herbin (1882–1960) was born into a craftsman family in a small village at the Belgian border in 1882. He later studied drawing at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts from 1898-1901 when he settled in Paris.
His initial influence of Impressionism and Fauvism, visible in the paintings he sent to the Salon des Independants in 1906, later gave way to an investigation of Cubism. This evolved after he moved to the Bateau-Lavoir studios in 1909, where he met Pablo Picasso, Georges Braque and Juan Gris. At his second exhibition at the Salon des Indépendants one year later, his work was exhibited in the same room as that of Jean Metzinger, Albert Gleizes and Fernand Léger. 1912, he was included in the influential Section d’Or exhibition.
After producing his first abstract paintings, Herbin came to the attention of Léonce Rosenberg who, after World War I, made him part of the group centered on his Galerie de l’Effort Moderne. His work was exhibited there on several occasions from 1918 to 1921. Herbin’s radical reliefs of simple geometric forms in painted wood, such as Coloured Wood Relief (1921; Paris, Musée National d’Art Moderne), challenged not only the status of the easel painting but also traditional figure-ground relationships.
The harsh criticism towards these reliefs and related furniture designs, even from those most favorable towards Cubism, was so devastating that Auguste Herbin heeded Rosenberg’s advice and returned to a representational style until 1927. Herbin himself later disowned the landscapes, still-lifes and genre scenes of this period, such as Bowls Players (1923; Paris, Musée National d’Art Moderne), in which the objects were depicted as schematized volumes.
He died in Paris in 1960 at the age of 78.
The paintings and drawings of a Bela Kadar (1877–1956) are provocative examples of early twentieth-century art. Exciting and often whimsical in his approach, Kadar adopted a remarkable number of international trends, including Cubism, Futurism, Neo-Primitivism, Constructivism, and the Metaphysical School. Mixing and melding these trends with uncanny ease, Kadar became famous for what critics called his “dashing turns of style.”
Kadar’s favorite themes, including Hungarian peasant courtship, romantic Magyar legends, and the security of domestic life, add to the warmth of his compositions. During the 1920′s and early 1930s, the freshness and charm of his art was celebrated in Budapest, Berlin, Philadelphia, and New York.
Ben Shahn (1898–1969) – Born in Kovno, Lithuania to an orthodox Jewish family, Ben Shahn became one of America’s leading Social Realist painters. He settled with his family in Brooklyn, New York, and had an apprenticeship with a lithographer while taking evening classes in drawing. In 1929, he shared a studio with photographer Walker Evans and in 1930 at the Downtown Gallery had his first one-man exhibition.
Until 1930, Shahn did lithography work and attended New York University, City College, and the National Academy of Design. He traveled to Europe and North Africa and became increasingly committed to social justice themes going from interest in social ills at large to the plight of individuals.
Between 1930 and 1933, he painted his well-known Sacco and Vanzetti and Tom Mooney series, and was a mural assistant to Diego Rivera at Rockefeller Center. He also painted murals for the WPA, worked as a photographer for the Farm Security Administration, and designed World War II posters for the government. He did magazine illustrations including for “Time” and “Seventeen.” He executed many stain glass windows, and in 1956, was Charles Eliot Norton Professor at Harvard University.
After World War II, he renewed his interest in his Jewish heritage and developed a style influenced by Surrealism with Hebraic subjects. In 1998, the Jewish Museum in New York City organized a traveling exhibition of his works that he created between 1936 and 1965. These works with allegorical, mythological and Biblical themes were more personal than his earlier pieces of social realism, and were his reaction to the birth of the state of Israel and nuclear proliferation.
Bernard Karfiol (1886–1952) was an American artist born in Budapest, Hungary. Educated in Brooklyn, New York, he studied at the National Academy of Design in New York and at the Academie Julian in Paris. From 1908 to 1913, he taught and painted in New York. From 1917, Karfiol’s work was widely exhibited and received many awards. He was included in the Museum of Modern Art (NY) first exhibition of American art, Paintings by Nineteen Americans in 1929. Bernard Karfiol painted nudes, portraits and landscapes throughout his life. Many of his scene paintings were inspired by thelandscape of Maine. Today, Kariol’s work is seen in many museums, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art (NY) and Museum of Modern Art (NY).
Bernardo Siciliano was born in Rome on June 29, 1969. He is the son of the late Enzo Siciliano, the writer. At the age of 17 years, he put on a show of pastels for the first time at the Carlo Virgilio Gallery in Rome, presented by the poet Attilio Bertolucci.
In 1991, Il Gabbiano Gallery in Rome arranged for his first one-person show, presented by Roberto Tassi. This was followed by a selection of portraits in 1993, by another one-person show in 1995 (presented by Valerio Magrelli), and the exhibition “Under 30″ in 1996, presented by Guido Rebecchini, at Il Gabbiano Gallery. In 1993, he had a solo exhibition at “Appiani Arte 32″ in Milan, presented by Marisa Volpi. That same year, he was invited to Young Artists IV at the Rome Palazzo delle Esposizioni.
Il Gabbiano and Forum Gallery have presented his works at both international and national Fairs: the CIAE in Chicago, the FIAC in Paris, the Arte Fiera of Bologna, the LA Art Show and Art Miami. In 1992 the director Piero Maccarinelli commissioned him to paint the sets of the comedy “Verso la fine dell’estate” by Carlo Repetti, put on at the 35th Festival of Spoleto. In 1995 he collaborated on Bernardo Bertolucci’s movie “Io ballo da sola”.
He was among those highest classified in a referendum held among readers of the magazine “Quádri e sculpture” for the exhibition “The Other Art?” at Palazzo Barberini, Rome. In 1998 he was an award winner at the invitational XXXII Prix International d’Art Contemporain de Montecarlo. In recent years, he has been included in group shows at Albright Knox Museum in Buffalo, NY, Galleria Forni in Bologna, and DFN Gallery in New York. His latest solo exhibitions have been at the Museo D’Arte Contemporanea Roma (2010), The Chiostro del Bramante, Roma (2005), The Palazzo della Ragione, Milano (2005), the Italian Heritage Culture Foundation in Los Angeles (2000), Studio Forni in Milan (2004), Forum Gallery Los Angles (2002), and Forum Gallery New York (2010, 2006 & 2003).
Currently he is living and working in New York.
Bill Vuksanovich was born in Belgrade, Yugoslavia in 1938 and came to Chicago in 1952, where he resides today. He attended the American Academy of Art and the School of Professional Art, both in Chicago.
His main body of work includes larger-than-life size photo-realistically rendered drawings. He portrays his figures in the frontal position, so that the image and viewer become involved in a confrontation with one another. This offers an emotionally and psychologically loaded presentation that never fails, to engage.
In 1992, a distinguished committee of leading art professionals awarded Vuksanovich a Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant. And in 2001 he participated in the Identities: Contemporary Portraiture exhibition at the New Jersey Center for Visual Arts, Summit, NJ.
Brian Rutenberg was born in South Carolina in 1965. Currently living and working in New York City, this nature-based abstract painter became a Forum Gallery artist in 2001. A graduate of the College of Charleston, South Carolina, Brian Rutenberg participated in his first group exhibition in 1985 and moved to New York shortly thereafter. He received a Master of Arts degree from New York’s acclaimed School of Visual Arts. As a young and ambitious painter, he sought to capture a unique representation of the landscape through abstraction. The base of his interest stems from growing up between Pawley’s Island and Charleston, where the river and lake merge with ocean. These early childhood memories continue to be a presence in his painting.
In 1997, Brian received a Fulbright Scholarship which afforded him an opportunity to spend seven months in Ireland. It is from his travels there that the artist’s work became shaped by the Celtic Culture, specifically the La Tene Period, 600-400 BC. Captivated by arabesques of pure abstraction, so powerful in the artwork of this period, Brian began to use a similar merging of forms in his work. Large circular shapes of color transformed his canvases into 2 dimensional dioramas for the viewer; each swirl bringing us closer to the center of the drama on the picture plane.
Inspired by artists like Gregory Amenoff, Joan Mitchell and Hans Hoffman, Brian Rutenberg executes paintings that embrace spirituality, love of color, and a passion for paint. Although nature continues to be the major theme in his paintings, each of his works shows a brand new approach and vision.
Spanish painter César Galicia has been a Forum Gallery Artist since 1994. Renowned for his “greater than life or more than real paintings,” César Galicia paints what is referred to as a “sensation of contemporary trompe L’oeil.” Galicia does not paint reality directly, but instead channels his efforts to reconstructing the appearance of things.
Galicia does not make use of photography. For his paintings, he focuses on traditional study of “things natural,” in which he paints his work from the inside to the outside. In effect, Galicia begins with painting a dimensional understudy covered up in the final work. This pictorial construction of subject and volume results in substance, depth, and solidity to his imagery. The effect on the viewer and the surprise of a visual reality in paint is pure César Galicia virtuosity. Galicia has taken the craft of painting to its limits – in which oil painting has become fantastic and nearly real.
Modernist sculptor Chaim Gross (1904–1991) is known for his direct wood carvings of jubilant circus performers, confident urbanites, and intimate mother and child pairings, imagined in various states of solitude and joyous interdependence and rendered in a combination of traditional and tribal/folk styles. A native of Austria, Gross emigrated in 1921 as teenager from war torn Eastern Europe to New York City, where he studied sculpture at the Educational Alliance on the Lower East Side and came to know painters Moses and Raphael Soyer, Peter Blume, Adolph Gottlieb, and many other important 20th-century New York artists. Gross then expanded upon his study of sculpture with Robert Laurent at the Art Students League and Elie Nadelman at the Beaux-Arts Institute of Design. After his first solo show in New York in 1932 at Gallery 144, Gross’s works were soon acquired by major Manhattan and American museums, including The Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Whitney Museum of American Art. Today, the largest body of his sculpture in a public collection may be found at the Hirshhorn Museum in Washington D.C., while a permanent display of his sculpture is on view at the The Renee and Chaim Gross Foundation in Gross’s historic townhouse and studio in Greenwich Village.
Charles Josef Biederman (1906–2004) – Born in Cleveland, Ohio to Czech parents. He apprenticed in a commercial art studio in Cleveland, Ohio from 1922-26 and studied at The Art Institute of Chicago from 1926 – 29. He moved to New York in 1934 where he met Alfred Barr, Fernand Leger and Pierre Matisse who gave him his first solo exhibition at The Pierre Matisse Gallery on March 2, 1936. This exhibition coincided with the Museum of Modern Art’s exhibition Cubisim and Abstract Art. Later that same month he was included in a group exhibition with Charles Green Shaw. From 1936–1937, Charles Biederman lived in Paris and so he was not included in formation of American Abstract Artists, but in Paris he met Mondrian, Brancusi, Arp, Miro and again Leger. In 1941, Biederman returned to Chicago and subsequently moved to Red Wing, Minnesota in 1942 where he lived until his death in 2004.
His works are included in the collections of the Art Institute of Chicago, Dallas Art Museum, High Museum of Art, Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Metropolitan Museum of Art, Minneapolis Institute of Arts, Museum of Modern Art, Tate Gallery, Walker Art Center, and the Whitney Museum of American Art.
Charles Burchfield (1893–1967) – A painter of both the towns and countryside of middle-western America and enchanted woodland scenes. Born in Ashtabula Harbor, Ohio, he grew up in Salem, Ohio, and studied at the Cleveland school (now Inst.) of Art from 1912 to 1916. His mentor there was Henry Keller. In 1921 Burchfield moved to Buffalo, to design wallpaper until 1929 for M.H. Birge and Sons; he spent the remainder of his life there. His career can be divided into three distinct phases: During the first, which ended about 1918, he painted landscapes often based on childhood memories and fantasies; during the second, from about 1918 to 1943, he portrayed the grimy streets and rundown buildings of the eastern Ohio area; and during the third, from 1943 until his death, he returned to landscapes, investing them with a kind of ecstatic poetry. Burchfield often reworked old pictures, however, so that work from different phases may appear side by side. His preferred medium throughout his life was watercolor.
Charles Demuth (1833–1935) brought to his art a highly polished and elegant touch whether he was painting flowers or industrial landscapes. He could see in the configurations of water tanks, smokestacks, fire escapes, pipes, electrical wiring, street lamps, and oil derricks, fascinating vehicles for his artistic expression and he portrayed them all with order and grace. Many of his compositions, particularly those of figures and flowers, appear to float in an indeterminate space. The industrial landscapes tend to be blocked out to the edge of the canvas and while they seem to be more geometrically ordered in rendering, they, too, have a poetic quality of ambivalence. They suggest Demuth’s fascination with the precision of architectural shapes, yet a bohemian disdain for the rigidity of an industrial world. An air of mystery was allowed to enter all of Demuth’s compositions, just as there was a strong aloofness about the artist himself.
Demuth was born in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, an older American community with an authentic elegance in its buildings. His own home was a haven of quiet and stability, and the artist always stayed close to this secure Lancaster base throughout his fairly wide travels. Initial art training was undertaken at the Drexel Institute and then at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. There was more study in France where, as in America, he was fortunate in his circle of friends. He enjoyed the excited cafe talk of John Marin, Lyonel Feininger, Arthur Dove, and French artists like Duchamp, Matisse, Gris, Picasso, Laurencin, and Picabia. It was probably Duchamp’s radical approach to art that helped to set the direction of the American artist’s style. In 1917 Demuth made the first of his architectonic paintings which were subsequently to attract critical attention. Experimentation with cubism became steadily apparent after this year and is most pronounced in his industrial landscapes.
A wealthy man-about-town, poet and minor novelist, Charles Green Shaw (1892-1974) was in his thirties before be began to paint seriously, and then went on to become a significant figure in the world of abstract art in America. His nonrepresentational work was highly personal in character.
Shaw was born in New York City in 1892. His parents died when he was young, and an uncle raised him and his twin brother. He graduated from Yale, studied architecture at Columbia University, went to the Arts Students League to study under Thomas Hart Benton, and finally took private lessons with George Luks.
He served in World War I, lived in Europe during much of the 1920s, and wrote articles for Smart Set and The New Yorker before he became committed to painting. Once committed, however, he soon was in the very thick of the abstract movement, exhibiting in important avant-garde shows.
Many of Shaw’s early paintings were notable for their clarity of form and almost architectural construction. Much of his work, in fact, heavily influenced by Jean Arp, actually was constructed of separate planes of wood and masonite, meticulously joined at the seams, which seem to pass over and under one another.
In the 1930s he did a lively and highly original series of paintings collectively entitled Plastic Polygon, which is now considered the most significant of all his work. Some are painted wood reliefs in which he cut planes out of his surfaces and then replaced them as tightly fitting pieces of an abstract composition. He was especially fond of circles and used them often in different connotations.
In the latter part of his life Shaw turned to abstract expressionism. His style grew bolder and showed a strong graphic sense. He died in 1974.
Paris-based artist died at the age of 77 in December, 2008.
A self-described “image maker,” Matton employed drawings, paintings, sculpture and film in a life-long quest to reveal and amplify the nature of the things and people he loved to all who saw his work.
In 2000, the Paris International Contemporary Art Fair, “FIAC”, showed 200 one-person exhibitions for the year 2000; Charles Matton’s installation of multi-media box constructions captivated the enormous audience, including the President of France, Actress Catherine Deneuve, and collectors from all over the world.
Forum Gallery presented Matton’s first American exhibition in 2002. From then until now, Matton’s installations have been enthusiastically reviewed by The New York Times, ARTNews, American Arts Quarterly, ArtForum, and Art in America. Matton’s magical creations are deeply involving; they are meditative and memorable, amusing and arresting, harmonious works of art.
Charles Matton’s paintings, drawings, films and mixed-media constructions are featured in public collections around the world, including the National Museum of Modern Art, Kyoto and Tokyo, Japan; Centre d’Art Contemporain de Frejus, Paris; The Seven Bridges Foundation, Greenwich, CT; 21C Foundation Museum, Louisville, KY; the Nassau County Museum of Art, Roslyn Harbor, NY; and over forty private collections in the United States.
A talented artist from California who applies contemporary narrative themes in a film-noir palette, Christian Vincent has had many sold-out exhibitions in New York as well as in California, Chicago, and Atlanta.
Vincent studied at The Brentwood Art Center, The Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, and The California Art Institute in Valencia, CA. He was awarded the prestigious First Julius Hallgarten Prize in the 169th Annual Exhibition at The National Academy of Design, New York. In 1998, Christian Vincent was included in the Arnot Art Museum’s “Re-presenting Representation III” in Elmira, New York. He was also commissioned to create an artwork for the NASA Space Program’s Art Collection celebrating its achievements.
Christian Vincent’s work is included in several prominent private collections internationally.
Craig McPherson was born in Wichita, Kansas in 1948. After receiving a Bachelor of Fine Arts at the University of Kansas in 1970, he spent the following years curating and lecturing for the National Endowment for the Arts, before taking up residence in New York in 1975 to develop a career as an artist.
In 1983, McPherson had his first one-man exhibition at the A.M. Sachs Gallery in New York. McPherson next devoted his energies to printmaking, producing mezzotints of New York City at night. These prints led to a corporate art commission for the American Express Company for a 90-foot mural cycle for the auditorium of their corporate headquarters at the World Financial Center (WFC). This series of oil paintings is composed of four panels titled, Twilight: The Waterways and Bridges of Manhattan. In January 1987, the Harbors of the World mural cycle was initiated by American Express for the lobby of their New York WFC headquarters. This vast undertaking involved ten paintings 365 feet long by 11 feet high. This project involved traveling the world for one year, and studio work for four years. The murals depict the harbor cities—New York, Venice, Istanbul, Sydney, Rio de Janeiro and Hong Kong. They are on permanent view in the American Express lobby and are referenced in a new book, Art in Public Places: New York’s 50 Best, by David Masello.
McPherson has had a number of one-man gallery shows in New York and has been in group exhibitions all over the world. He’s also had a number of smaller corporate and museum commissions. In 1998 he had his first museum retrospective at The Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge University, England. The show traveled to Glasgow, Scotland. The Frick Art and Historical Society, Pittsburgh, PA, mounted a one-person exhibition, Steel, Pittsburgh Drawings By Craig McPherson, in 2008.
McPherson’s work is included in numerous museum, corporate and private collections in the U.S. and abroad. These include the British Museum, London; The Metropolitan Museum of Art; the National Gallery of Art; the Whitney Museum of American Art; the Art Institute of Chicago; the Minneapolis Institute of Art; The Cleveland Museum of Art; the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; the Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney; the Smithsonian American Art Museum; the Fogg Museum; The Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge, England; the Detroit Institute of Arts; The Smithsonian Institution; the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco; the Boston Public Library; the Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh; The Hunterian, Glasgow; the Library of Congress; the New-York Historical Society; the Museum of the City of New York; and many smaller city and university collections.
McPherson is featured in the exhibition American Dream: From Pop to Present at the British Museum in London through June 18, 2017.
McPherson has won art awards, been reviewed in The New York Times, The Financial Times, ARTnews, The New York Post, The Observer and many other publications.
Cybèle Young creates unique sculptural works inspired by the fleeting day-to-day minutiae that comprise everyday life. Often described as “deviously funny, somewhat ominous, or even potentially dangerous,” Young’s miniature worlds are created by intricate handling of Japanese paper and the artist’s copperplate etchings. In the application of her subconscious to mundane and often overlooked quotidian objects, teapots and umbrellas come to life in conversation, brassieres have thoughts, and armchairs develop to-do lists.
Cybèle Young graduated from the Ontario College of Art and Design in 1996. She is the recipient of the 2007–08 Open Studio Nick Novak Scholarship, two Ontario Arts Council Grants, two Toronto Arts Council Grants, and two Canada Council for the Arts Grants. Young’s works have been exhibited internationally and her work is included in the collections of the Art Bank of Canada, Ottawa; the Canadian Department of Foreign Affairs; Ernst & Young; and Gryphon Capital Management, San Francisco. The Artist currently lives and works in Toronto.
David Burliuk was a central figure in the history of the Russian avant-garde movement as an accomplished poet, art critic, and exhibition organizer. He was born into a privileged class of Russian society. His wife was educated with the Czar’s children, and he was well positioned to become an artistic leader. Burliuk studied at the Kazan School of Fine Arts in 1898 and then studied in Odessa, Moscow, Munich, and in Paris at the Ecole des Beaux Arts. His early works were fauve-like, “violent in color and heavy with paint” and were exhibited with the Blue Riders in Munich.
In Russia, as a breaker of artistic tradition, he was expelled in 1911 from the Moscow Institute. With other futurists, he undertook a public campaign with lectures, journals and films—all focused on the craziness of modern, industrial life.
With the advent of World War I, he left Russia and traveled for four years including to Siberia, Japan, and the South Seas. To start all over again, he moved to America in 1922 and settled on Long Island where he continued to paint until his death there in 1967.
His subjects range from neo-primitive paintings to peasant life in Russia to futurist depictions of South Sea fishermen. Much of his painting in Russia vanished in the Russian Revolution. Throughout his life, Burliuk was innovative, energetic and upbeat. In the United States, he developed his “radio style”, a style that involved symbolism, neo-primitivism, and expressionism.
With deep regret, Forum Gallery notes the passing of David Levine on December 28, 2009. His contribution to the arts was extraordinary.
An obituary appeared in the December 29, 2009 New York Times.
David Levine was born in Brooklyn, New York in 1926 and studied at the Brooklyn Museum of Art School, Pratt Institute, the Tyler School of Art at Temple University in Philadelphia and the Eighth Street School of New York with Hans Hoffman. One of America’s most celebrated artists, David Levine’s many awards began with the Louis Comfort Tiffany Foundation Award in 1955 and have included the Isaac Maynard, Julius Hallgarten and Thomas B. Clarke awards, all from the National Academy of Design; the George Polk Memorial Award, a Guggenheim Fellowship, the Childe Hassam Purchase Prize (American Academy of Arts and Letters), the John Pike Memorial Prize and the Gold Medal of the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters in 1993. Internationally, David Levine has received the French Legion of Honor award and the Thomas Nast Award in Landau, Germany.
David Levine exhibited with the Davis Gallery in New York from 1954 to 1963, when he joined Forum Gallery. In addition to the numerous one-person exhibitions he has had at Forum since then, David Levine has had exhibitions in Paris, Stuttgart, Washington, Munich, Oxford (England), Beverly Hills and Columbus, Georgia.
David Levine is represented in the collections of the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, the Cleveland Museum of Art, the Brooklyn Museum, The Newark Museum, the Library of Congress and the National Portrait Gallery, the San Francisco Fine Arts Museums, the National Portrait Gallery of England and the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
Six books have been published of David Levine’s art, including The Arts of David Levine (Knopf, New York, 1978) and Pens and Needles (Gambit, Boston, 1969).
David Mach was born in Methil, Fife, Scotland in 1956. He studied for five years at the Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art in Dundee, then spent a further three years working for his MA in Sculpture at the Royal College of Art, London. Since leaving the RCA in 1982 he has lived and worked in London.
Mach has used everyday, recognizable, mass-produced objects in multiples, notably newspapers, magazines, car tires, matches and coat hangers throughout his career. He brings diverse items together in large-scale installations with humor and social comment.
The density of the installations is echoed in matchheads where multiple objects make the whole. Thousands of safety matches are glued together so that mainly only the colored heads of the matches are seen. Mach sees the match heads as having three clear lives: the original colored head; the performance of burning it; and the burned head, instantly aged black and white version of the originals.
The coathangers are made in a similar way to the matchheads, using traditional sculptural techniques, a figure or object is modeled in clay, molded, cast and then the coathangers are laboriously shaped, fitted and welded round the plastic shape. In these sculptures the hooks form a sort of fuzz that masks the identity of the object which makes it more enticing to look at. The hooks make a ghost out of the object from which they protrude.
The collage works grew from a need to show a commissioner how a sculpture might look. It has grown from one small figure cut out to show scale to large scale collages, art works in their own right, using thousands of cut out pieces, which are best described as resembling a still from an epic movie. ‘A National Portrait’ a series of fifteen monumental collages was exhibited at the Millennium Dome, London.
As well as exhibiting extensively Mach has also made a number of commissioned public sculptures in the UK. He has work in public collections at the Tate Britain; Tate Liverpool; the National Portrait Gallery; the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art; Scottish National Portrait Gallery; Gallery of Modern Art, Glasgow; the British Council collection among many others.
He has work in many international collections including Museum of Contemporary Art, San Diego; McMaster Museum, Hamilton, Ontario; Museé Leon Dierx, Reunion Island; Kawasaki City Museum, Tokyo; Museum of Art, Auckland; FRAC du Rhones-Alpes, France; FRAC de Franche-Comté; Museé d’art Contemporain, Dole, France; Museé van Hedendaagse kunst, Antwerp; de Werf, Aalst, Belgium; UBS, Geneva; Microsoft, Seattle; Hasbro Inc, New York.
Davis Cone is the celebrated American realist artist who has chosen Art Deco movie theatres as his only subject. His meticulous chronicles of these icons of American life are included in virtually every important collection of contemporary American representational art. A native of Augusta, Georgia, Davis Cone began exhibiting regionally in 1977. By 1981, his work was shown in Tokyo, Lisbon, Madrid and Nuremburg in addition to many American cities. Davis Cone’s first one-person exhibition was at OK Harris Works of Art in New York in 1979; ten solo New York exhibitions have followed, as has the exhibition Theatre Paintings 1977-1983 at the Georgia Museum of Art (Athens) and the Hunter Museum of Art (Chattanooga, TN). Davis Cone’s works were included in the landmark touring exhibition, Contemporary American Realism since 1960 (Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts) and in many subsequent group exhibitions, including the 2009 Shock of the Real – photorealism revisited at the Boca Raton Museum of Art.
Davis Cone’s paintings have been the subject of two published books, Hollywood on Main Street by Linda Chase (The Overlook Press, 1988) and Popcorn Palaces: The Art Deco Theatre Paintings of Davis Cone by Michael Kinerk and Dennis Wilhelm (Harry N. Abrams Inc., 2001). Davis Cone joined Forum Gallery in 2000.
Diana Moore’s distinctive figurative sculptures are made from contemporary building materials – cast carbon steel and concrete, yet they are timeless in their form and beauty. Their life-size scale conveys an unexpected heroism. Although alert and stoic, they convey a relaxed and expectant sense of power. Her figures favor a frontal pose, feet solidly spread, weight equally distributed, head erect, eyes staring straight-ahead. This static, generalized pose relates to renditions of ancient Greek kouros, Egyptian or Cambodian statutes. What further distinguishes Moore’s subjects is their contemporary attire – athletic running shorts, halter tops, hooded sweatshirts, sandals.
The hollow vessels of metal have a delicate rust patina. Moore manipulates the rigid steel material to appear as supple as leather, fabric or skin. Her series of metal purses stylize the body even further – their forms recalling round breasts, buttocks, and other comforting maternal parts. They are beautifully molded, detailed and refined.
Diana Moore’s commanding, large-scale figures and vessels, cast in bronze or steel, have been commissioned for many prominent settings, including two in Hamilton Square in Washington D.C. (2001 & 1999), one Federal Art & Architecture Commission for the U.S. Courthouse in Lafayette, LA (1999), and the Martin Luther King Federal Courthouse in Newark NJ (1990). Her most recent commission is slated for the State Department Building in Trenton, NJ.
Diana Moore was born in 1946 in Norfolk, Virginia. She received an undergraduate degree at Northern Illinois University and her masters at the University of Iowa. She currently resides in Connecticut.
Edwin Dickinson’s (1891–1978) oeuvre is unique among American artists of the 20th century. Although he was thought to have anticipated abstract expressionism with his highly abstracted landscapes, the “irresistible site” is always recognizable. As Joe Shannon wrote for the Smithsonian Press, Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Edwin Dickinson was not opting for reduction in a modernist sense. He never desired to have the surface effects subvert the particularity of a site, but the interplay between surface effects and depicted effects excited him.
Although Dickinson was very much a modern painter, he was influenced by Whistler’s muted, tonalist landscapes and was greatly impressed by Velazquez and El Greco.
Eli Bornstein was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, in 1922. He studied for a period at the Art Institute of Chicago and the University of Chicago, but received his Bachelor of Science (1945) and Master of Science (1954) degrees from the University of Wisconsin. He also attended the Academie Montmarte of Fernand Leger (1951) and the Academie Julian (1952) in Paris. After teaching at the Milwaukee School of Arts (1943–47) and the University of Wisconsin in (1949), Bornstein became professor emeritus of fine arts at the University of Saskatchewan and lived in Saskatoon ever since. He served as Head of the University Department of Art from 1963–72. Upon his retirement in 1990, he was awarded the degree of Doctor of Letters.
Eli Bornstein is best known for abstract three-dimensional works, which he terms “structurist reliefs.” Structurist Art is a post-war trend towards geometric abstraction. Bornstein contributed to the recognition of the genre internationally, through articles published in The Structurist, an international art journal he founded in 1960 and edited until 2010.
Bornstein’s abstract reliefs explore the interaction of forms and colors in space and light. Like structures observed in nature, his structurist reliefs, under the changing effects of light and movement, offer the viewer a constantly renewed visual experience. The work was designed so its appearance would change in response to daily shifts in sunlight and shadow, as well as seasonal variations.
Bornstein’s work reflects his interests in both natural and built environments. He has been quoted as saying “Science deals with one aspect of reality, and art with another…I think they complement one another.” Among his awards is the 1968 Allied Arts Medal from the Royal Architecture Institute of Canada. A scale model of his Wascana Centre artwork has recently been acquired by the Canadian Centre for Architecture in Montreal for its permanent collection.
Eli Bornstein is represented in the National Gallery of Canada, as well as numerous other public and private collections. His works have been shown internationally in both Canada and the United States. His large-scale commissions include an abstract construction for the Winnipeg airport (1962) and a four-part vertical construction for Regina’s Wascana Centre Authority (1984). Bornstein’s 15-foot aluminum construction, “The Tree of Knowledge,” was commissioned by the Saskatchewan Teachers’ Federation (STF) and installed in downtown Saskatoon in 1957. It has since become widely used as a symbol of the STF and is a feature of its new building on Arlington Avenue.
Sculptor of abstract human figures, Elie Nadelman (1882–1946) applied aesthetic theories he learned in Europe to American subjects and popular culture. His work seems a combination of classical methods and folk art, which merge to create a unique fusion of traditional and modern.
Eliasz Nadelman was born on February 20, 1882, in Warsaw, Poland. The youngest of seven children of Philip and Hannah Nadelman, Eliasz grew up in Poland’s Russian zone, where the tensions of anti-Semitism existed. His parents decided to raise their children relatively secular and they owned a jewelry shop.
In 1899, he graduated from the Warsaw gymnasium and enrolled in the Warsaw School of Fine Arts. Nadelman enlisted in the Russian Imperial army to avoid a draft, which would have required four years of service. Returning to Warsaw the following year, he worked on his own for two years and then headed to Munich, drawn by German Romanticism. There he was exposed to an array of historical styles and artworks and at the time his work remained in the Symbolist style. In 1904 he entered a drawing competition and earned second prize, receiving five hundred francs, which enabled him to move to Paris in autumn 1904.
There he settled into the Polish art colony of Montparnasse. Nadelman began to exhibit in group shows and met Leo Stein, Andre Gide, and Eugene Druet. Druet eventually gave Nadelman his first solo exhibition, featuring thirteen plaster sculptures and 100 of his “radically simplified drawings.” His drawings “so bordered on abstraction that he would later use them to support his claim that he, not Picasso, had invented cubism (Hankins).” Another supporter of his work was Alfred Stieglitz who featured Nadelman in his October 1910 issue of Camera Work.
The following year, Nadelman had a one-person show at the William B. Paterson Gallery in London. This show included ten female heads chiseled in marble and was purchased in its entirety by Helena Rubenstein.
Nadelman constantly experimented with materials, working with wood, bronze, and marble or gilded gold. He also experimented with the scale and sizes of the figures. His subject matter was inspired by dancers, jugglers, and acrobats of the circus and other forms of popular entertainment at the time. He also began to use figures dressed in modern everyday clothing, which was unheard of at the time.
Alfred Stieglitz offered Nadelman his first one-person exhibition in New York, featuring two new plasters, a series of drawings, and earlier sculptures and reliefs in December 1915 at his gallery, “291.” Nadelman continued to exhibit and had great success with sold out shows of his genre subjects composed of simplified geometric forms and stylized animal bronzes.
In 1925 he exhibited his bronze and wood versions of stylized plaster genre figures, and classical heads, that used stains, gesso, and paint. These wooden figures were very unpopular during his lifetime but now are among the most valued works of Nadelman’s.
“Relatively impoverished,” Nadelman had not exhibited between 1927 and World War II and became isolated. At the time, the Abstract Expressionists were making their mark on the art world. The fate of Nadelman’s relatives in Poland at the time of the war spurred him to work for the war relief service as art instructor at Bronx Veteran’s Hospital from 1942–1945. He was later weakened by a heart condition that limited his mobility.
Elie Nadelman committed suicide on December 28, 1946.
Evelyn C. Hankins, “Elie Nadelman: Sculptor of Modern Life” American Art Review June 2003
Ellen Eagle is a New York artist whose intimate portraits, done in pastel on pumice board, have the sensitivity and depth of oil paintings. Ellen Eagle began her studies at California College of Arts and Crafts before moving to the East Coast and continuing at the National Academy and The Art Students League in New York.
Ellen Eagle was included in the biannual juried exhibition at the National Academy of Design Museum in New York, and joined Forum Gallery by invitation shortly thereafter. Her work has been included in exhibitions at the Frye Art Museum, Seattle (WA), Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo (NY), Butler Institute of American Art, Youngstown (OH) and the New Jersey State Museum (Trenton). She received the Edward R. Mooney Traveling Scholarship, the Elizabeth Greenshields Foundation Grant, the Phyllis Mason Grant and a full residency scholarship at the Vermont Studio Center, Johnson (VT).
Ellen Eagle teaches at The Art Students League and the National Academy School of Fine Arts, New York.
Born in Brooklyn in 1931, Elliot Offner studied at Cooper Union and then at Yale University where he received a Bachelor of Fine Arts in 1953 and a Master of Fine arts in 1959. He has subsequently received many awards and honors, has been the subject of over twenty solo exhibitions since 1964, has received extensive commission work, and is represented by many prestigious public collections.
From 1974–2008, Offner held the position of Andrew W. Mellon Professor of the Humanities at Smith College in Northampton, Massachusetts, where he imparted to his students his love for the craft of sculpture, his medium of choice. Offner was a master of bronze casting, the graceful motion of his works having been compared to the work of the great American sculptor Paul Manship.
“I create sculpture that is reverential and evokes a sense of grandness and beauty and spirituality through art that speaks of nature, but is not nature.”
Ernst Ludwig Kirchner (1880–1938) German painter, who was one of the leading practitioners of expressionism. He was influenced by the strong colors and compositional distortions of neoimpressionism and by the expressiveness of African and Oceanian woodcarving (see African Art and Architecture and Oceanian Art and Architecture). As a founding member of the expressionist group Die Brücke (The Bridge) in Dresden in 1905, Kirchner tried to distill natural forms in radical and sometimes brutal simplifications.
His bold lines and clashing colors create a sense of violent emotion. Moving to Berlin in 1911, Kirchner produced some of the most characteristic work of German expressionism, especially in scenes with women, such as Five Women in the Street (1913, Wallraf-Richartz-Museum, Cologne), in which grotesque distortions mock the mannered artificiality of Berlin society. His work in the late 1920s became increasingly abstract as he attempted to solve theoretical questions. The Nazis deemed him a degenerate artist and confiscated 600 of his paintings. Soon afterward, he committed suicide.
Everett Shinn (1876–1953) was a painter and illustrator and a member of THE EIGHT. From Woodstown, N.J., he worked as a designer for a gas-fixtures company in Philadelphia from 1890 to 1893, after studying industrial design. After deciding that he preferred fine arts, he took courses at Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts between 1893 and 1897, and, at the same time, worked as a reporter-artist for the Philadelphia Press. During these years, he met the future members of THE EIGHT.
He moved to New York City in 1897 and continued his career as an illustrator and an artist. Altogether, he illustrated twenty-eight books and ninety-four magazine stories in addition to making cartoons and newspaper illustrations.
About 1899 he made the first of a series of murals and large panel for private houses and, in 1907, he painted eighteen panel for the Stuyvesant Theater. In 1911 he completed murals on local industrial themes in the Trenton, New Jersey City Hall.
From 1917 to about 1923, he worked for motion-picture companies as an art director. In his paintings, he found subject matter in the slums as well as in middle-class café society and in theatrical activities (Theater Box, 1906, AK). His theater scenes were usually done in oil, his slum and lower-class pictures in pastel. Unlike JOHN SLOAN, who felt a genuine reformer’s commitment to lower-class urban themes, Shinn viewed the entire city as a bright, glittering spectacle to savor and to enjoy until the end of his life. His art reflects the influences of Honoré Daumier, Edgar Degas, and Jean-Louis Forain.
Edith Shazo, Everett Shinn, 1974.
Excerpted from Matthew Baigel, Dictionary of American Art, Harper & Row Publishers; New York, 1979.
Franz Kline – American Abstract Expressionist painter, born in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania. Studied painting in the Art Department, Boston University, 1931–5 and at Heatherley’s School in London 1937–8, then settled in New York. Began by painting views of New York in the tradition of Sloan and Glackens, and also portraits and seated figures. Some of his works from c.1946 were abstract or had a Cubist structure; began in 1950 to make vigorous large-scale calligraphic abstract paintings in black and white. His first one-man exhibition at the Egan Gallery, New York, in 1950 quickly led to his recognition as one of the leading Abstract Expressionists. From 1958 he introduced strong colours into some of his works. Died in New York.
The highly personal pastels of G. Daniel Massad have affected viewers deeply since they were first shown to the public in 1982. Massad, who has a degree in English from Princeton (undergraduate) and the University of Chicago (graduate), turned to art in 1979 and attended the University of Kansas, from which he received an MFA in painting in 1982. His work was first shown in Kansas at the Kellas Gallery in Lawrence in 1982 and at the Mulvane Art Center in Topeka and the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art in Kansas City in 1983.
G. Daniel Massad began to exhibit in galleries in 1984 with an exhibition at the Rosenfeld Gallery in Philadelphia. He joined Tatischeff & Co. (New York) in 1986 and Forum Gallery in 1998. In addition, he has had solo exhibitions at the Allentown Art Museum in PA (1997), Lancaster Museum of Art in PA (2003), and Huntington Museum of Art in WV (2003).
Works by G. Daniel Massad are included in many public collections, including The Art Institute of Chicago, Arkansas Art Center, Philadelphia Museum of Art, Philbrook Museum of Art, Milwaukee Art Museum, Metropolitan Museum of Art, and The National Museum of American Art.
George Grosz was a painter and a caricaturist. Born in Berlin, Germany, and trained in Dresden (1909–11), Berlin (1911), and Paris (1913), he came to this country in 1932 and settled here the following year. Grosz’s caricatures began to be printed as early as 1910. In 1918 he joined the Berlin Dada group and during the next decade illustrated magazines and designed sets for the theater. His mordant comments on German society, as in the Ecce Homo series (1922), created problems with the government and ultimately caused him to leave the country.
After his arrival in the United States, Grosz tried to adapt to the American scene by painting many views of New York City. His satirical works were replaced by nightmare visions and scenes of the brutality of warfare. He adopted Baroque oil-painting technique as well as a quasi-surrealistic interest in strangely juxtaposed objects (Peace II, 1946, WMAA).
In 1947–48, he introduced the “Stickman” theme, in which lumpy figures on sticklike legs engage in nightmarish activity. His autobiography, A Little Yes and a Big No, appeared in 1946.
Hans Hess, George Grosz, 1974.
Since his first one-person exhibition, at Forum Gallery in 1966, Gregory Gillespie (1936–2000) has been recognized as one of America’s most important and interesting contemporary artists. Defying categorization, Gillespie has painted memorable self-portraits, haunting fantasy landscapes, symbolic geometric abstractions and monumental dimensional paintings unlike any others.
Gregory Gillespie began his art studies at The Cooper Union for Advancement of Science and Art in New York. He received his MFA from the San Francisco Art Institute in 1962, and received the Chester Dale Fellowship to continue his work and study at the American Academy in Rome, where he resided from 1964 to 1970. In 1970, Gregory Gillespie was given a one-person exhibition at the Georgia Museum of Art in Athens. After three more exhibitions at Forum Gallery in 1968, 1970 and 1973, the Joseph H. Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden (Washington, DC) presented a retrospective exhibition of Gregory Gillespie’s work in 1977. The artist was forty years old. The Hirshhorn exhibition brought Gillespie into national prominence, and his work was soon shown at the Rose Art Museum (Waltham, MA), the Oklahoma Art Center (Oklahoma City), the Aldrich Museum of Contemporary Art (Ridgefield, CT), the Whitney Museum of American Art (NY) and the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts (Richmond). In 1981, Frank Goodyear, Jr. included Gregory Gillespie in the landmark exhibition of American realism organized by the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts that traveled to Richmond, VA; Oakland, CA; Lisbon, Portugal and Munich and Nuremberg, Germany.
In 1984, the Rose Art Museum at Brandeis University (Waltham, MA) organized a two-person exhibition of paintings by Gregory Gillespie and William Beckman that traveled to the La Jolla Museum of Contemporary Art in California. Subsequently, Gregory Gillespie’s works were shown at museums in Greenville (SC), Wichita (KS), Trenton (NJ), San Francisco (CA), Lincoln (MA), Brooklyn (NY) and Boston (MA). In 1991–92, Gregory Gillespie was featured in the traveling exhibition American Realism and Figurative Art 1952–1990 in five Japanese museums.
Gregory Gillespie’s work was the subject of a recent retrospective exhibition organized by the Georgia Museum of Art (Athens) which was shown at the San Diego Museum of Contemporary Art and at the List Visual Art Center (Cambridge, MA) in 1999 and at the Butler Institute of American Art (Youngstown, OH) from January to early March, 2000.
Gregory Gillespie’s paintings are included in the permanent collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Joseph H. Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, the Museum of Fine Arts (Boston), the Georgia Museum of Art (Athens), the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts (Richmond), the San Diego Museum of Contemporary Art and the Wichita Art Museum. In 1994, Gregory Gillespie received the Augustus St. Gaudens Award from Cooper Union in New York. He lived in Massachusetts until his death in April 2000.
Guillermo Muñoz Vera is an internationally acclaimed artist whose work has been the subject of many one-person exhibitions throughout Europe and, more recently, in the United States. Born in 1956 in Concepción, Chile, Muñoz Vera studied at the Universidad de Chile in Santiago, at which he also taught in the Facultad de Bellas Artes.
In 1979 the artist moved to Madrid where he continues to work and live today. There, in 1994, along with Spanish artist Carmen Spínola, Muñoz Vera founded the important foundation, ARAUCO, la Fundación Arte y Autores Contemporáneos, which actively promotes multidisciplinary artistic ventures and offers cross-cultural programs to students from around the world.
The work of Guillermo Muñoz Vera is as consistent in its representational excellence as it is protean in the experiences reflected. Ultimately his is a personal interpretation of the human condition, confronted with conviction and subtlety, in which the artist’s technical prowess and precision never detract from the conceptual outline of his subjects.
Inspired by the large-scale paintings he created for his 2002 commission for Santiago del Chile’s La Moneda metro station, from 2003 to 2007, Muñoz Vera executed a series of oils focusing on the natural wonders of his native Chile.
A long tradition of Spanish realist painting, dating back to Diego Velázquez in the 17th century, has guided Muñoz Vera in his delicate use of light and shadows, as both his portraits and still-lifes are imbued with dexterous and subtle shading.
Over twenty publications have been printed on the work of Guillermo Muñoz Vera, including a 442 page catalogue with 350 illustrations for his one-person retrospective mounted in 2002 by Madrid’s Centro Cultural de la Villa. Also monumental is the 400 page printing by Banco de Chile on the theoretical development and technical execution of his murals for Santiago’s metro station. More recently the artist was honored with a commission to paint the portrait of King Juan Carlos I of Spain. Forum Gallery is pleased to represent Guillermo Muñoz Vera exclusively in the United States.
Henry Koerner (1915–1991) was born in Vienna, Austria, where he also studied art. In the late 1930s, he came to the United States to live and work in New York City. Koerner designed war posters and served in the United States Army during World War II. In addition to serving as a court artist at the Nuremberg trials, Koerner also worked for Time Magazine, painting cover portraits of politicians, entertainers and educators. In 1952, he came to settle in Pittsburgh, where he taught at Chatham College and the Art Institute of Pittsburgh. In the mid-1980s, Koerner retired to devote his time to painting. He was the last Pittsburgh artist to be offered a major solo exhibition at the Carnegie Museum of Art in 1984.
Born in Cleveland, Ohio in 1954, Holly Lane earned her BFA and MFA with distinction from San Jose State University, CA. Her uniquely-carved sculptural pieces have been included in several distinctive exhibitions, including “Re-presenting Representation” at the Arnot Art Museum in Elmira, NY, “New Voices, New Visions” at the Kennedy Museum of American Art at Ohio University, and “Myths and Magical Fantasies” at California Center for the Arts Museum in Escondido. Lane’s work has also been included in several International Art Fairs in New York, Chicago and Los Angeles.
In 2003, Holly Lane had her first solo exhibition at Forum Gallery, New York. She has also had solo exhibitions at the Lyman Allyn Art Musuem in London, CT and the Yellowstone Art Museum in Billings, MT. Her work is included in public collections at The Detroit Zoological Institute, Dow Jones & Co, Principle Financial Group, and Memphis Cancer Center, as well as over eighty private collections.
Press, Reviews and Catalog Excerpts
“At first glance, one might mistake Holly Lane’s loving painted intricately framed icons for odd religious relics. But Lanes artifacts are far from antiquated. Rather, they are quirky allegorical narratives addressing such diverse issues as the role of women in society, spiritual faith, and environmental degradation from a wryly humorous highly personal point of view”. – George Melrod, Art & Antiques, September 1995
“Lane merges the abbreviated physical spaces of early Renaissance tableaus with the psychological realm explored in Surrealist painting.” – Berin Golonu, Artweek, Previews, April 2001
“Lane combines several images on separate panels to create a layered narrative. To complement her small-scale pictures she carves and paints wood frames that amplify the paintings’ themes and become part of the work.” – Katherine Gregor, ARTnews, Holly Lane, “Frame and Fiction, Summer 1992
“Lane use(s) painting as a crystallized mental theatre (that) seductively illustrates discursive ideas”. – Peter Schjeldahl, Catalog essay, California Center for the Arts Museum, “Myths & Magical Fantasies” October 27,1996-February 2, 1997
“Holly Lane paints animals people and scenes from the natural world to create allegories that address large philosophical questions in an intimate fashion. Attempting to reconcile culture and nature, social and biological conflict, the future and the past, Lane’s intricately carved, altar-like pieces touch on human foibles with gentle humor.” – Memphis College of Art Biennial 1999 catalog – February 1999
“Her symmetrical wooden altars house odd surreal paintings as the intricate physical body houses the enigmatic soulher meticulous carving share intriguing formal qualities with the convoluted and bio-morphic imagery found within the picturesThe sum creates allegorical shrines exuding thought-provoking psychological elements”- Anthony Di Maggio, Review, NYC, September 15, 1999
“Her sculpted frames resonant references to Old Masters and her surrealist facility for creating fantastic terrains, seemingly point to the past. Lane, however, is very much in the fast lane of contemporary culture. Her intellectually rigorous approach on canvas in addressing such powder keg issues as feminism, the environmental and animal rights easily hurdle any notion of propaganda. Lane’s paintings elicits vigorous contemplation. For those ready to the challenge, the rewards are beyond measure.” – Judd Tully, catalog essay, “Pictures on the Edge, The Narrative Images of Holly Lane” March 1995 Art Museum of Southeast Texas
Hugo Robus (1885–1964) was an American sculptor and painter from Cleveland, Ohio. He studied at the Cleveland School of Art and at the National Academy of Design in New York. Robus went to Paris in 1912 and saw the Futurist exhibition at Galerie Bernheim-Jeune; the exhibition transformed Robus’ perception and he soon began painting works influenced by Cubism, Futurism and Synchromism. In Paris, he studied sculpture with Emile-Antoine Bourdelle, and on his return to America, Robus began to make models in clay and plaster. Beginning in 1920, he devoted his full energies to modelling streamlined figurative sculptures and casting them in plaster, silver and bronze. The continuous, curving contour of his best-known work, Girl Washing her Hair (1933, New York, Museum of Modern Art), which when reflected in its polished metal base forms a complete circle, suggests a synthesis of motion with simple solid form. This fusion of muscle and action was the central motif of Robus’ sculpture. Forum Gallery represented Hugo Robus towards the end of his life, and has shown his work since the gallery opened.
Born in St. Petersburg, Russia, Ilya Bolotowsky (1907–1981) became a leading early 20th-century painter in abstract styles in New York City. His work, a search for philosophical order through visual expression, embraced Cubism and Geometric Abstraction and was much influenced by Dutch painter Piet Mondrian.
Bolotowsky immigrated to America in 1923 and, settling in New York City, attended the National Academy of Design. He became associated with a group called The Ten, artists including Julian Weir and Childe Hassam who rebelled against the strictures of the Academy and held independent exhibitions.
In 1936, having turned to geometric abstractions, he was one of the founding members of the American Abstract Artists, a cooperative formed to promote the interests of abstract painters and to increase understanding between themselves and the public. Later on, he became an early member of the Federation of Modern Painters and Sculptors, established in 1940.
During this period, Bolotowsky came under the influence of the Dutch painter Piet Mondrian and the tenets of Neoplasticism, a movement that advocated the possibility of ideal order in the visual arts. Bolotowsky adopted his mentor’s use of horizontal and vertical geometric pattern and a palette restricted to primary colors and neutrals.
His mural for the Williamsburg Housing Project, New York, was one of the first abstract murals done under the Federal Art Project. Despite Bolotowsky’s clear, precise control of his images, he emphasized the role of intuition over formula in determining his compositions. In the 1960s, he began making three-dimensional forms, usually vertical and straight sided.
Irene Rice Pereira (1901–1971) was an abstract artist whose work reflected an interest in light, space and mysticism. She began her studies at the Art Students League from 1927-30 and then traveled to Acadamie Moderne, Paris for her last year of schooling. Becoming bored with the traditional academicism at the Acadamie, Pereira left for the Sahara Desert. There she encountered her first “vision of eternity”, which she attempted to incorporate throughout her artistic career.
Pereira moved back to New York City in 1932 and painted canvases based on the relationship between man and machine. Her first show was the following year at the ACA Gallery. Pereira experimented with nontraditional materials frequently and by the late ’30d she was painting on plastics and glass, adding marble dust to her pigments. During the thirties, she taught at the WPA’s Design library, bestowing many students with the influence of the Bauhaus School. In the 1940s, created multimedia paintings, superimposing layers of glass to explore the effects of resonating light.
By 1947, Pereira had mostly finished her pioneering experiments with coruscated and layered glass and had moved onto more complex oil canvases. The best examples of this later style are Green Mass at The National Gallery of Art and Mecca at the National Museum of American Art.
- biography courtesy of Djelloul Marbrook and The Caldwell Gallery, Manilus, NY
Born in Prague, Czechoslovakia, Jan Matulka (1890–1972) became a leading Modernist, working with Stuart Davis to find a new genre of Cubism based on distortion of forms. His body of work ranged from traditional to abstract, reflecting the changes in the art world of 20th century America.
In 1907, Matulka came to the Bronx, New York where he spent much of his early twenties in poverty. From 1908 to 1917, he studied at the National Academy of Design, and in 1917, received the first Pulitzer traveling scholarship with which he traveled and painted in the Southwest and Florida. His work from this period showed a movement towards abstraction, replacing his earlier focus on realism.
In 1919, Matulka went abroad to Paris, where he was greatly influenced by Cubism. Around this time, he also traveled extensively back to his birthplace in Czechoslovakia. Although his first important one-man exhibition was at The Art Center, New York in 1926, he didn’t return to the States until one year later, on a scholarship from the National Academy.
From 1929 to 1931, he taught at the Art Students League where he inspired emerging Modernists such as David Smith, Dorothy Dehner, and Irene Rice Pereira. Matulka also did satiric illustrations for the Communist magazine “New Masses,” where he expressed his sympathy for the working classes. Although his position was soon eliminated by conservative faculty members, his paintings were included in a showing at the Art Students League in 1931, along with Stuart Davis, John Graham and Arshile Gorky.
In the late 1930s, Jan Matulka became a mural artist at the Federal Art Project under the WPA. He had his final important solo exhibition at ACA Gallery in 1944, yet continued to paint until his death in New York City nearly thirty years later.
Born in Queens, New York, in 1939, Jane Lund attended the Pratt Institute, Queens College and the New York School of Social Research. The winner of several awards throughout the 1980s, Lund has had six one-person exhibitions. Her work has also been included in a wide range of group exhibitions, dating from her 1973 contribution to the New Talent: New England show at the DeCordova Museum in Lincoln, Massachusetts.
These group exhibitions include the 1980 exhibition Three Woman Show: Contract Point, held at the Springfield Museum of Art [Massachusetts], the inaugural exhibition at the Fitchburg Art Museum [Massachusetts] titled Monocular Vision: New England Realist Artists in 1989, the Exactitude exhibition at Forum Gallery in 1996 and The Figurative Impulse show, held Miami Dade Community College in 1998.
Jane Lund’s richly colored and meticulously detailed pastels, usually consisting of intimate portraits and still lifes, reveal the artist’s fascination with form and light. Meditative in tone, Lund provides a contrast between background and object [or sitter], that enables her works to have an immediate and awe-inspiring realism. Lund’s pastels are imbued with a dreamlike, hallucinatory clarity not dissimilar to the early self-portraits of William Beckman, to the more phenomenological endeavors of Lund’s friend and fellow Massachusetts artist Gregory Gillespie, and even the allegorical themes of the late Ivan Albright.
Lund’s portraits differ from directly observed still lifes in that they are derived from photographs and studies. The subjects of these portraits are seen frontally. Their silhouettes fill the space and stare outward. While their totemic countenances are disconcerting, they are not confrontational. These portraits are homages to Lund’s relatives and close friends whose lives are entwined with hers. The artist connects with them and imbues their physical features with a remarkable sense of personae and history.
Jane Lund presently resides in Ashfield, Massachusetts.
Born in 1958 in Los Angeles, Jeffrey Gold studied at the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, receiving his BFA degree in 1983.
A Forum Gallery artist since 1993, Gold continues to live and work in Los Angeles where he has also been exhibited by Koplin Gallery and Robert Berman Gallery. His Still Life with Lemons was included in Representing LA, an exhibition which originated at the Frye Art Museum in Dec., 2000 and traveled to the Laguna Art Museum and South Texas Institute for the Arts.
Focusing on the nude, and in particular the female body, Gold employs dramatic chiaroscuro to generate introspective portraits of his subjects poised in powerfully balanced compositions. A quiet beauty permeates each of these portraits, capturing the imagination and gently disclosing a veiled aperture into the psyche of each sitter. Likewise, Gold’s elaborate still lifes project a similar pristine elegance.
Jeffrey Gold’s work is in the collection of Jim Carrey and Annabeth Gish and other important collections of contemporary figurative painting throughout the United States.
John Graham (1881–1961) was a painter, writer, and collector who was influential in the formation of Abstract Expressionism. Born Ivan Dambrowsky, in Kiev, Russia, he studied law and served on the czar’s staff before the Revolution. Although little is known about his early years, he seems to have become familiar with the works and ideas of Kasimir Malevich, Mikhail Larionov, and Wassily Kandinsky, which he absorbed either in Russia or in Western Europe.
Graham came to this country in the early 1920s and studied with John Sloan at the Arts Student League. His paintings alternated between abstraction, realism, Fauvism, and Surrealism. Younger artists, such as David Smith and Arshile Gorky, were introduced to the importance of the unconscious as a source of artistic inspiration through his African sculpture collection, the European magazines he received, such as Cahiers d’art, his book System and Dialectics of Art (1937), and magazine articles he wrote.
Graham painted many portrait busts of strange, cross-eyed women. In the 1940s, he repudiated modernism and retreated into the occult. The last years of his life were spent in London.
From: Baigell, Matthew, Dictionary of American Art, New York, 1979
John Koch (1909–1978) was born in Toledo, Ohio on August 18, 1909 and raised in Ann Arbor, Michigan. He briefly studied charcoal drawing in his late teens and early twenties, which was his only real period of formal art study. He also spent a few summers in Provincetown, MA and attended lectures by Charles Hawthorne, who was teaching there at that time.
Koch went to Paris at age of nineteen and stayed for five years, studying independently and supporting himself by drawing commissioned portraits. In 1929, his work was exhibited at the Salon des Tuileries and Salon du Printemp. He returned to New York City five years later, where he lived out the rest of his life. In the year 1935, he married Dora Zaslavky and had his first New York exhibition at Valentine Dudensing Gallery. In 1939, he signed on with Charles W. Kraushaar Gallery, where his first show sold out. He exhibited there many times throughout his career. His work was also acquired then by the Brooklyn Museum of Art and the Boston Museum of Fine Arts. In 1940 he was in a group show at the Whitney Museum titled “Forty Under Forty,” and the 51st Annual Exhibition of the Art Institute of Chicago. From 1942–5 he joined the United Service Organizations (USO) in the art sketching and portrait division in veterans hospitals.
From 1944–46, John Koch taught figure painting at the Art Students League. He also became a featured artist of classical portraits at Portraits Inc, where he was able to earn a substantial income to support his art. In 1950, one of his works was exhibited at the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s, “American Painting Today,” and another work made the cover of Life magazine. His portrait of Princess Margaret was also featured on the cover of Life Magazine in 1955.
He received several awards from the National Academy of Design in 1952, 1959, 1962 and 1964. Around that same time, he also exhibited twice in group shows at the Corcoran Gallery of Art. In 1964, his work was chosen for the cover of Time Magazine.
John Koch became an elected member of the American Academy and the National Institute of Arts and Letters in 1970. Five years later, he suffered a stroke and abandoned painting for the first time since his youth. That same year, his work was included in exhibitions at the DeCordova Museum and University of Houston Fine Arts Center. In 1977, his work appeared in exhibitions at the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York and Joslyn Art Museum in Omaha, Nebraska.
John Marin (1870 – 1953) was a major early modernist, best known for his watercolors, but who also worked in oils and made many etchings. Born in Rutherford, NJ, he had begun sketching with some seriousness by 1888. His earliest watercolors combined elements of Impressionism and Tonalism. They show the influence of Tonalists such as Dwight Tryon and also reveal some aberrations of form Marin would develop later. In the early 1890s, he worked for four architects and by 1893 had designed six houses in Union Hill, NJ. Deciding to become an artist, he studied at Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts from 1899 to 1901 under Thomas Anshutz and at Art Student’s League from 1901 to 1903. Marin went abroad I 1905 and remained there until 1910 with the exception of a brief return visit in 1909. Unlike others who traveled to Europe in those years, he did not immediately become immersed in the most modern styles, preferring instead the art of James A. M. Whistler, Pierre Bonnard, and the Nabis as well as Neoimpressionism. Nevertheless, he met Edward Steichen and, through him, Alfred Stieglitz, who exhibited his work with Alfred Maurer’s in 1909 and then gave him a solo exhibition in 1910. His subjects were most often urban ones. After returning to America, Marin substituted New York City for Paris and Venice as an important subject.
Marin first went to Maine in 1914, and the many seascapes he painted there until the very end of his life reflect an intimacy with the northern ocean as profound as that of Winslow Homer. His œuvre consists of urban and rural scenes in roughly equal numbers. Many of the rural pictures he painted about 1920 have been characterized by one historian as “color orgasms,” for, in painting pure color sensations, it seemed as though Marin were trying to convey the living, dynamic energies of nature. His urban scenes capture, in unregimented, freeflowing brushwork, the excitement of the modern city. Like his near-contemporary George Bellows, Marin responded emotionally to the forces of life, but in abstract rather than anecdotal ways. Like Arthur G. Dove, another near-contemporary and fellow abstractionist, Marin brought to his pictures a vital energy that evoked, but did not replicate the movements and powers he felt residing in his subjects.
Marin wrote about himself and his art in a Whitmanesque manner, celebrating both nature and his responses to it in a grand way. The major collection of his etchings is in the Philadelphia Museum. Many watercolors and oils are in MoMA.
Sheldon Reich, John Marin, 1970
Born in Philadelphia in 1910, Joseph Hirsch began his study of art at the Philadelphia Museum when he was seventeen. He also studied privately with Henry Hensche in Provincetown and George Luks in New York City. In addition to formal study, Hirsch traveled extensively, including a five year stay in France. He participated in the WPA in the easel painting division, with occasional work in the mural division, where he painted murals in the Amalgamated Clothing Workers Building and the New York City Municipal Court. During World War Two, Joseph Hirsch took part in the war effort as an artist war correspondent, recording significant battles and events. He taught at the Chicago Art Institute, the American Art School, University of Utah and had a significant tenure at the Art Students League in New York. He also won many awards, among them were a fellowship at the American Academy in Rome, the Walter Lippincott Prize, First Prize at the New York World’s Fair (1939), the Guggenheim Foundation Fellowship (1942, 1943), and the Fulbright Fellowship (1949). Social commentary was the backbone for the majority of Joseph Hirsch’s paintings. Joseph Hirsch died in 1981.
Jules Kirschenbaum (1930–2000) was born in New York in 1930. He studied at the Brooklyn Museum Art School and at the Hans Hoffman School. In 1953 he had his first one-man exhibition at the Salpeter Gallery in New York City and won the Hallgarten Prize at The National Academy of Design. In 1956 he married artist Cornelis Ruhtenberg. That same year Kirschenbaum was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship to study in Florence, Italy, where he remained until 1958.
He moved to Des Moines with his family in 1963 to assume the position of artist-in-residence at the Des Moines Art Center. In 1967 he was appointed associate professor of art at Drake University, becoming a full professor in 1970. While teaching at Drake, Kirschenbaum pursued his painting career, exhibiting in many group and one-man exhibitions throughout the country and in Japan and Italy.
He has won numerous awards for his work, and is represented in such well-known public collections as the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; the Des Moines Art Center; the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington, D.C.; the National Academy of Design, New York; and the Butler Institute of American Art, Youngstown, Ohio.
Bio courtesy of www.drake.edu
Born in Widdin, Bulgaria, as Julius Pincas (1885–1930), he was raised in Bucharest, Rumania. He later adopted the name, Jules Pascin, under which all his paintings are known. He attended art schools in Vienna and Munich and traveled to Berlin and Paris. From 1905 to 1929, he worked as a satirical cartoonist for a Munich weekly. From 1914 to 1920, he lived in America and became a U.S. citizen to escape military service in France. He traveled extensively in the southern states and portrayed downtrodden segments of society. In 1920, he returned to Paris, and from there, traveled throughout Europe and North Africa. He changed his mediums from watercolor and drawing to oil. Suffering depression and alcoholism, he committed suicide on the eve of a prestigious solo show by slitting his wrists and hanging himself in his studio in Montmartre.
Peter Falk, “Who Was Who in American Art”
German-born Konrad Cramer (1888–1963) trained for three years at the prestigious Karlsruhe Academy, where he received rigorous training. His classically-based education was tempered and his style much influenced by avant-garde art he saw at galleries in Munich, where works by painters including Vassily Kandinsky (1866–1944), Franz Marc (1880–1916), and other members of the Blaue Reiter group were shown.
After immigrating, Cramer and his wife, painter Florence Ballin (1884–1962), lived for several years in New York City. Here he joined in with the American modernists and produced non-objective paintings. Never an artist to limit himself to a single medium, Cramer early on learned a wide variety of techniques and his mature style includes painting, drawing, collage, lithography and photography, two or more media often used in a single work.
In the early 1920s Cramer and Ballin, settled in the Catskill artists’ colony of Woodstock where Cramer was a one of several artists, including Andrew Dasburg (1887–1979) and Henry Lee McFee (1886–1953), whose paintings incorporate modernist and cubist techniques. Taking advantage of frequent studio gatherings where artists could work from the live model, Cramer continued to draw the figure throughout his career. Cramer employs airbrush, a technique very much of the fifties, to shade, accent and decorate his lyrical figures.
Larry Rivers was born Yitzak Loiza Grossberg in the Bronx, New York on August 17, 1923. He was the son of Ukrainian immigrants Samuel and Sonya Grossberg. Until 1945 Rivers earned his living as a saxophonist playing in various jazz bands throughout New York City. His name was changed when a nightclub comedian introduced his group as “Larry Rivers and the mudcats.” From 1944–45 he studied music theory and composition at the Julliard School of Music.
At about this time he met painter Jane Freilicher who introduced him to the world of visual art. He began to study painting with Hans Hofmann in 1947. With funding from the GI bill he enrolled in the Fine Arts program at New York University, where he worked with William Baziotes and received a Bachelor’s degree in art in 1951.
Following this Rivers developed a career that focused on painting, but included music, stage design, acting, filmmaking and writing poetry and prose. He was a facile draftsman whose artwork formed a connection between the Abstract Expressionism of the 1940s and 50s and the Pop Art of the 1960s. He was fascinated by great painting and among some of his most noted paintings were his personal renditions of some of the world’s classics: for example, Leutze’s “Washington Crossing the Delaware,” and Manet’s “I Like Olympia in Blackface.” The subjects of his figurative paintings were family, history, politics and sex. His oil paintings included the use of stencils, cutouts, blank canvas and image reversals. He often painted family members.
Rivers died of liver cancer on August 14, 2002 in his home in Southampton, New York.
Laura Ziegler is an American artist who lives and works in Lucca, Italy. She was born in 1927, and was awarded a Fullbright Scholarship to Italy for the study of polychromed sculpture in 1949. A native of Columbus, Ohio, Laura Ziegler exhibited extensively in the midwest before joining Knoedler Galleries in New York after World War II. Sculpture by Laura Ziegler may be seen at the Cincinnati and Columbus museums of art in Ohio, at the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden in Washington and at the Brooklyn Museum, the Neuberger Museum and the Museum of Modern Art in New York.
Works by Laura Ziegler have been acquired by the collections of John D. Rockefeller, Nelson Rockefeller, Thomas Messer, John Hay Whitney, William Paley, Alfred Barr and the Lazarus’ of Columbus, among others. Laura Ziegler is a member of the National Academy of Design, and her work is shown regularly at the Academy.
Linden Frederick grew up in Upstate New York and studied art at Ontario College of Art and Design in Toronto and the Academia de Belle Arte, Florence, Italy. His sensitive, nearly narrative landscape and scene paintings were first exhibited in New England in 1985.
Since moving to Belfast, Maine in 1989, Linden Frederick has been included in exhibitions at the Farnsworth, Ogunquit and Portland museums of art in Maine and in gallery exhibitions in Maine, New York, Texas, New Mexico, South Carolina and Pennsylvania.
A Forum Gallery artist since 2004, Linden Frederick has been the subject of four one-person Forum Gallery exhibitions. His work has been acquired by public collections throughout the United States, and by private collectors from the literary, film and finance communities, among others.
Born in Ludvinovka in the Ukraine, Louis Lozowick became best known for his lithographs of skyscrapers, constructions, and machinery, a series spanning fifty years.
He attended the Kiev Art School from 1904 to 1906 and emigrated to the United States at age 14. In New York, he studied for three years at the National Academy of Design with Leon Kroll, attended Ohio State University, and between 1919 and 1924, traveled extensively in Europe including Russia. From his experiences there with artists, he wrote “Modern Russian Art,” and later did illustrations for the “New Masses” and translated for “Broom Magazine.”
Returning to the United States, he was a muralist for the Public Works Art Project and became involved in the aesthetic of Constructivism, making drawings of machine ornaments. He also toured the country extensively and did many lithographs from his travels including a 1932 lithograph of the Grand Canyon. In 1949, he settled in South Orange, New Jersey.
Lucian Freud is the grandson of Sigmund Freud, the pioneer of psychoanalysis. Born in Berlin on December 8, 1922, he moved to Britain in 1933 with his parents after Hitler came to power in Germany. His father, Ernst, was an architect; his mother the daughter of a grain merchant. Freud became a British national in 1939. He started working as a full-time artist after being discharged out of the merchant navy in 1942, having served only three months.
Today his impasto portraits and nudes make many regard him as the greatest figurative painter of our time. Freud prefers to not use professional models, to rather have friends and acquaintances pose for him, someone who really wants to be there rather than someone he’s paying. “I could never put anything into a picture that wasn’t actually there in front of me. That would be a pointless lie, a mere bit of artfulness.”
In 1938–39 Freud studied at the Central School of Arts in London; from 1939 to 1942 at the East Anglian School of Painting and Drawing in Debham run by Cedric Morris; in 1942–43 at Goldsmiths’ College, London (part-time). In 1946–47 he painted in Paris and Greece. Freud had work published in Horizon magazine in 1939 and 1943. In 1944 his paintings were hung at the Lefevre Gallery.
In 1951 his Interior in Paddington won an Arts Council prize at the Festival of Britain. Between 1949 and 1954 he was a visiting tutor at the Slade School of Fine Art, London.
In 1948 he married Kitty Garman, daughter of the British sculptor Jacob Epstein. After that relationship ended, he married Caroline Blackwood in 1952. Freud had a studio in Paddington, London, for 30 years before moving to one in Holland Park. His first retrospective exhibition, organized by the Arts Council of Great Britain, was held in 1974 at the Hayward Gallery in London. The one at the Tate Gallery in 2002 was a sell-out.
He has said of his palette, “I don’t want any color to be noticeable… I don’t want it to operate in the modernist sense as color, something independent… Full, saturated colors have an emotional significance I want to avoid.”
Lyonel Feininger (1871–1956) – Born on July 17, 1871 in New York City, Feininger studied art in Berlin and Hamburg, Germany, and in Paris, France, between 1887 and 1893. He was a cartoonist for German humor magazines and for the Chicago Tribune until 1908. In 1911, under the influence of French cubists—particularly Robert Delaunay—he turned seriously to painting, and in 1913 he exhibited in Berlin with Der Blaue Reiter (The Blue Rider), a German association of expressionist artists.
Feininger’s meticulously drafted works, representing buildings, locomotives, seascapes, and ships, are composed almost wholly of straight lines and colors planes. Even the light that illuminates his scenes is subdivided and partitioned into prismatic planes. In mature works such as Gelmeroda VIII (1921, Whitney Museum, New York City), his virtuosic use of overlapping veils of colored light creates an effect of dematerialization and mystery. Feininger taught at the Bauhaus in Germany from 1919 to 1933. He returned to the United States in 1937, where a new theme, skyscrapers, dominated much of his later work.
Born and raised in Chicago, Maria Tomasula is an active part of the Chicago art scene. Maria Tomasula received a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from the University of Illinois at Chicago, and then continued her education at Northwestern University, where she earned a Masters degree in Fine Arts. She is currently an Assistant Professor at the University of Notre Dame and also is a Lecturer at Northwestern University.
Her recent solo exhibitions were at Forum Gallery New York and Los Angeles, the Indianapolis Museum of Art, Indianapolis, IN and at the Mexican Fine Arts Museum, Chicago, IL. Her work was also included in Larger than Life: Women Artists Making it Big at Susquehanna Art Museum in Harrisburg, PA (2003), Recent Acquisitions at Mexican Fine Arts Museum in Chicago (2002), Obsessive Drawing at Delaware Center for Contemporary Arts (2001), Timely and Timeless at the Aldrich Museum in Connecticut (1994) and Transitional Objects: Contemporary Still Life at the Neuburger Museum of Art, Purchase College, New York (2006–07)
With striking color and theatrical compositions, Tomasula’s artwork is influenced by the votive painting of Mexico, as well as the contemporary writers of Latin America. As an artist she seeks to create very unique, but realistic depictions of still-lifes. Using what seem to be simple objects such as fruit, butterflies and flowers, she brings them together to create metaphorical, poetic and ambiguous work. She showcases flowers and fruits by using shallow space and often will paint a curtain or spotlight to draw attention to her images. The inanimate objects then take on evocative, sensual characteristics.
Each canvas is unique and intriguing as Maria brings her own sensibility to contemporary art of the 21st Century.
Mark Podwal may be best known for his drawings on The New York Times OP-ED page. In addition, he is the author and illustrator of numerous books. Most of these works — Podwal’s own, as well as those he has illustrated for Elie Wiesel, Harold Bloom and Francine Prose, typically focus on Jewish legend, history and tradition. Since 1971, Mark Podwal’s drawings and watercolors have been exhibited in galleries and museums worldwide including Yale University, the Israel Museum, Musée des Arts Décoratifs Palais du Louvre, the Skirball Museum in Los Angeles and the Jewish Museum in Prague.
Mark Podwal’s works are represented in the collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Victoria and Albert Museum, the Fogg Art Museum, The Library of Congress, the New Orleans Museum of Art, among others. Beyond his works on paper, Podwal’s artistry has been employed in an array of diverse projects including an Aubusson tapestry and five torah mantles for Temple Emanu-El in New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art has reproduced his art on ceramic plates, jewelry, a bookmark , color prints and notecards. In 1996, the French government named Podwal an Officer of the Order of Arts and Letters. Hebrew College, Newton Centre, Massachusetts, in 2003 awarded him a Doctor of Humane Letters honoris causa. In 2006, he designed sixteen kiln cast windows for the United Jewish Appeal Federation Headquarters in New York. Podwal recently collaborated with Academy Award winning filmmaker Allan Miller on House of Life: The Old Jewish Cemetery in Prague. The documentary, narrated by Claire Bloom, was broadcasted nationally by Channel Thirteen and PBS in April 2009. Podwal’s papers are archived in the Princeton University Library.
In 2011, Podwal received commissions to illustrate a new Passover Haggadah for the Central Conference of American Rabbis Press; to design new embroidered textiles for Prague’s seven hundred year old Altneuschul; to create a limited edition print for The Metropolitan Opera’s production of Nabucco; and to design Hanukkah cards for The Metropolitan Museum and The Metropolitan Opera.
He has exhibited at Forum Gallery since 1977. Also in 2011, he received the Jewish Cultural Achievement Award from the Foundation for Jewish Culture.
In 2014, at the Terezin Ghetto Museum there was an exhibition of Podwal’s cycle, All this has come upon us… The forty-two paintings and drawings, disturbing reminders of how Europe’s extensive history of “Jew-hatred” laid the groundwork for the Holocaust, have been published as archival pigment print portfolios. Portfolios have been acquired by the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, the Vatican, Library of Congress, Yad Vashem, the Bodleian Library, the British Library, Institute for Advanced Study, Harvard University, Yale University, Princeton University, Columbia University, Hebrew University, National Library of Israel among many others.
Podwal’s current projects are his posters for each new Metropolitan Opera season and a series on Mozart and Prague, exhibited in Prague’s Klementinum.
One of the most stylistically pioneering of the early modernists, Max Weber was a key figure in introducing avant-garde art to America. He worked in the mediums of oil, watercolor, printmaking and sculpture, and his subjects sometimes reflected the spiritualism of his religion. His styles included Fauvism, Cubism, Dynamism, Expressionism, and Futurism and reflected the broad spectrum of revolutionary art activity in Paris at the turn of the 19th into the 20th centuries.
He also created some social-realist paintings during the 1930s with depictions of factory scenes. These works reflected his left-wing political leanings, which he expressed as national chairman of the American Artists Congress, “the most powerful left-wing artists’ organization of the period” (Baigell). He was a writer on topics of modern aesthetics including ‘The Fourth Dimension from a Plastic Point of View’, published in “Camera Work” in July 1910.
Weber was from a strong Jewish background, having been born in Bialystok, Russia, and in 1891, he settled in Brooklyn. At the Pratt Institute, he studied with Arthur Wesley Dow from whom he learned to see forms as visual relationships rather than objects. He taught public school art in Lynchburg, Virginia from 1901 to 1903, and Duluth, Minnesota from 1903 to 1905, and then studied in Paris at the Academie Julian with Henri Matisse, Academie Colarossi, and Academie de la Grande Chaumiere. He was much influenced by Cubist artists Pablo Picasso and George Braque and by Paul Cezanne. He returned to New York in 1909, where he experimented with many modernist styles.
He was among the first American artists to show an interest in Indians of the American Southwest, and in 1913, his one-man exhibition at the Newark Museum was the first exhibition of an American museum for a modernist artist.
Matthew Baigell, “Dictionary of American Art”
Peter Falk, “Who Was Who in American Art”
Maximilien Luce (French, 1858–1941)—A painter, lithographer and draftsman, Maximilien Luce was born in Paris on March 13th, 1858 and died in the same city on February 6th, 1941. As a youth he apprenticed to become an engraver and took evening courses to deepen his knowledge in the field. In 1876, already a qualified craftsman, Luce entered the shop of the engraver Eugène Froment (1844–1900), a graduate of the Ecole des Arts Décoratifs. There, Luce worked on engravings, numerous illustrations for French newspapers as well as some for foreign periodicals.
In 1877 Luce left Paris for London. When he returned to France in 1879 he was called for military service, first in Brittany and then in Paris, were he continued with his career as an engraver. It was during his military service that Luce met Charles Emile Carolus-Duran (1837–1917), the famous French painter and sculptor whose students included countless artists—both French as well as foreign, John Singer Sargent (1856–1928) for example—who would go on to carve their niche in art history. Luce entered Carolus-Duran’s studio, a move which not only gave him meticulous training as a draftsman, but introduced him to the leading painters of the time.
One such artist Maximilien Luce met was Camille Pissarro (1830–1903), with whom he became very good friends and who gave Luce much artistic advice. Along with Pissarro, Georges Seurat (1859–1891) and Paul Signac (1863–1935) Luce was one of the founders of the Neo-Impressionist School (i.e. the Pointillists). For many years Luce adhered to the Divisionist technique of color separation and theories of the scientists Michel Chevreul, Charles Henry and Ogden Rood.
In 1887, Luce joined the Société des Indépendants, after which time he consistently participated in the avant-garde group’s exhibitions. Though landscapes made up most of his oeuvre, Luce executed some marvelous paintings of people in the Pointillist style—an aspect of his style which differentiated him from many of his fellow Neo-Impressionists.
Luce was always very interested in the worries and pains of ordinary people and attempted to honestly transmit such human plight in his portrayal of lockers, masons and other laborers whose daily work he witnessed. In fact, in his youth, Luce had been quite struck by the notion of ‘the commune’ and he subscribed to Anarchist magazines such as La Revolte and L’assiette au beurre (literally translated as “The Plate Cooked in Butter”) and was implicated in 1894 for politically incorrect behavior, for which he passed a stint in prison and subsequently recounted his adventures in his lithographic series Mazas.
Maximilien Luce was, for a period of time, a strict Pointillist. After 1920, however, when he began spending a large amount of time around Rolleboise, Luce started to paint in a freer manner. Concerned very little with accolades, he did, however, accept the position of President of the Société des Artistes Indépendants in 1935 subsequent to the death of Signac, a position from which he would resign as a statement against the society’s growing posture towards restricting Jewish artists from exhibiting.
Luce made a significant contribution towards exporting Neo-Impressionism and maintained strong ties with the Belgian Pointillist Théo van Rysselberghe (1862–1926). Luce was indefatigable and was a prolific artist. Maximilien Luce remains a very important figure in French Post-Impressionist Art, as a Pointillist and a social realist.
Megan Rye’s recent body of work uses as its primary source material, photographs taken by her brother while stationed in Iraq as a U.S. Marine. These large-scale paintings blur the boundary between abstraction and realism; offering an intimate perspective on the life of a soldier at war, while provoking questions of perception and reality. This work was the subject of her 2007 solo exhibition “I Will Follow You into the Dark,” at the Minneapolis Institute for the Arts (MN).
Rye received her BFA in Painting from the Rhode Island School of Design in 1998, and went on to complete her MFA in Painting at the University of Minnesota, and in 2005 attended the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, Maine. Rye is the recipient of the 2010 Bush Artist Fellowship; 2008 McKnight Foundation Fellowship; 2007 and 2004 Minnesota State Arts Board Grants; and the 2005 Jerome Foundation Fellowship. Her work is included in private collections across the country.
Born in Bangladore, India, in 1933 Michael Leonard studied graphic design and illustration at St. Martin’s School of art in London from 1954 to 1957, after which he worked as an illustrator. Leonard first exhibited as a painter in 1972 and has subsequently and numerous one-person exhibitions, in London at Fischer Fine Art and Thomas Gibson Fine Art and in New York at Forum Gallery. He his work has also been included in various selected group exhibitions in the United States, Europe and Canada.
Michael Leonard’s figure compositions are an interplay of solids and voids with a contrast of figurative representation and abstraction. His painting contain complex arrangements of torsos, limbs and arms. Dynamism derives from the design of his paintings and the actual physical movement of his subject and draftsmanship. The inner angular shape of Leonard’s figures creates movement and pushes his nude figure to the edge of the frame, imparting an inner and outer tension.
Leonard’s contrast of color and flesh tones evokes a sensuality to the human figure and to Leonard’s painting of the new classic nude. The contrast between the tonal range in the oil paintings with the initial drawings, which served as detailed finished pencil figure studies for the paintings, reveal Leonard’s virtuosity as a leading international painter of figurative art today.
Examples of Leonard’s work are in the collections of the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, London’s National Portrait Gallery, the New Orleans Museum of Art and the Museum Boymans van Beumingen in Rotterdam, to mention a few. He has also been the subject of several monographs, written by critics Lincoln Kirstein and Edward Lucie-Smith, and is cited in numerous articles, revues, anthologies and catalogues. Michael Leonard presently lives in London.
Michèle Fenniak’s enigmatic paintings of people in undefined, mysterious settings speak to the ambiguity of personal experience and the tenuousness of social order. The stories, or narratives, in this ambitious artist’s work are frequently indefinite and always obliquely expressed.
Canadian by birth, Fenniak attended Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario, where she later taught drawing, as she did at Brooklyn’s Pratt Institute and the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City, her present residence. Her work was included in the formidable works on paper exhibition at the Frye Museum of Art in Seattle titled A Decade of American Contemporary Figurative Drawing and is in collections at Arkansas Arts Center, and Cornell Fine Arts Museum in Florida. She has earned her MFA from Yale University and is a recent recipient of the Pollock-Krasner grant.
Michele Fenniak’s recent work combines imagery from many sources, real and imagined, to create impossible synthetic landscapes. The artificiality of these landscapes is explicit. Scale relationships don’t always fit together and viewpoints do not quite make sense. Tiny buildings and places are found throughout each piece. Some of these vignettes are recognizably contemporary and naturalistic, but others are historical, or edge toward the surreal. These incongruities suggest that the vast spaces pictured in the works might actually be quite small, like a model or explanatory illustration.
Nikolai Kasak (1917–1994) fits comfortably into the aesthetics of the international geometric avant-garde of the early twentieth century. An artist of Belarusian descent, Kasak began his formal training in the 1930′s in Warsaw, continuing on to Vienna, then Rome. He was originally trained in the academic style of late nineteenth century Realism, until the artist encountered abstract art for the first time in 1945. The artists of De Stijl, Russian Constructivism, and Supremetism had vast influence on Kasak, prompting him to shift his focus from a primarily figure-based aesthetic to pure abstraction. Concentration of form, formulaic compositions, and solid color shapes became the significant structural element in his painting. Upon immigrating to the United States post-World War II, Kasak had the opportunity to exchange creative ideas with other Eastern-European and Russian émigré circles, formulating and fine-tuning his artistic ideology.
Concurrently with his technical development, Kasak wrote a number of theoretical essays regarding the importance of positive and negative space in his compositions. Two major works entitled, Physical Art – Action of Positive and Negative, and From Action to Dynamic Silence: The Art of Nikolai Kasak, deal with “his preoccupation with nothingnessthe concept of void in both formal and symbolic terms. His work demonstrates the relationships between discs and squares and incorporates dichotomies between movement and light, space and matter, positive and negative antinomies.” 1
The entirety of Kasak’s approach is based on both rational and non-rational polarities, which supply a tension between the physical aspects (i.e. isolated color forms and geometric structures) and the conceptual implications of his work. In the Kasak’s own words, “the work of art is an independent and active reality in itself, that is a fully invented physical organism, and not a description, imitation, or deformation of anything.” 2
1 Myroslava Mudrak, “The Russian Review,” Vol.53, No. 3, pages 435-6.
2 Nikolai Kasak and John E. Bowlt, “From Action to Dynamic Silence: The Art of Nikolai Kasak,” Institute of Modern Russian Culture, Salt Lake City, Utah, 1991, page 15.
Odd Nerdrum was born in Sweden in 1944. He studied at The Art Academy in Oslo, Norway and later studied with the conceptual artist Joseph Beuys in Düsseldorf, Germany. Nerdrum developed a style of painting that is unique by any standard. His work is in the permanent collections of several international museums and many American museums including the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington, DC; The Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY; The New Orleans Museum, New Orleans, LA; The Portland Art Museum, Portland, OR; The San Diego Museum of Contemporary Art, San Diego, CA; Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, MN; The de Young Museum, San Francisco, CA, and The Frye Art Museum, Seattle, WA.
Between 1886 and 1892, Oscar Bluemner (1867-1938) attended technical high schools in Hanover and Berlin, Germany. He held two jobs as an architect before immigrating to the United Sates in 1892. For the next eight years, Bluemner moved back and forth between Chicago and New York, working on a variety of architectural projects. By 1900 he was married and settled in the New York City area where he would live until 1926.
Bluemner painted and sketched landscapes. His 1910-11 color drawings of New Jersey and New York scenes display a chromatic vibrancy equal to that of the Post-Impressionists, especially Vincent van Gogh. In 1912, Bluemner gave up architecture to devote all his energies to painting. That same year, during a seven-month stay in Europe, he had his first solo exhibition in Berlin.
During 1914-15, back in America, Bluemner radically transformed his artistic concepts and techniques, incorporated simplified architectural and landscape forms into interlocking architectonic grids of color planes, the result being brilliantly prismatic work. Although the use of bright color in these works resembles that of the American Synchromists or French Orphists, Bluemner claimed the early 19th century color theories of Goethe were more influential on him.
Otis Kaye (1885–1904) was born in 1885 in Neemah, Michigan. Werner Kaye, his German-immigrant father, who died in 1904, owned a lumber yard. With his mother Frieda Millabeke, Kaye moved to New York where he acquired his aesthetic impulse. Art was only a hobby, however, not a vocation for Kaye. He studied engineering in Dresden, Germany, and later formed an engineering firm with his cousin Paul Banks – J.J. Billsby & Co. He married Alma Goldstein, a woman he met during the 1920s, when he lived in Pittsburgh. Kaye was heavily influenced by the Dutch masters, especially Rembrandt. Other influences include Whistler and N.A. Brooks. Money painting was Kaye’s specialty. He took realism to new heights by recreating every exact line to the finest detail.
He moved to Chicago with his wife and son after World War I. His financial holdings were hurt by the Great Depression and although highly regarded, Kaye sold only two paintings in his lifetime. One of the persistent obstacles to his artistic career was punishment from the federal government due to a law passed in 1909 that mandated criminal prosecution for currency painting. Kaye often focused on bills that were out of circulation, as did preceding money painters Haberle and Harnett. Kaye moved back to Dresden in 1966 and passed away there in 1974. Kaye never exhibited any of his work publicly and family and friends own most of his work that remains today.
(b Málaga, 25 Oct 1881; d Mougins, France, 8 April 1973). Spanish painter, sculptor, draughtsman, printmaker, decorative artist and writer, active in France. Pablo Picasso dominated 20th-century European art and was central in the development of the image of the modern artist. Episodes of his life were recounted in intimate detail, his comments on art were published and his working methods recorded on film. Painting was his principal medium, but his sculptures, prints, theatre designs and ceramics all had an impact on their respective disciplines. Even artists not influenced by the style or appearance of his work had to come to terms with its implications.
Canadian painter Paul Fenniak joined the roster of artists at Forum Gallery in 1998, continuing the gallery’s commitment to exhibiting the finest of 20th century figurative art. In April 1999, Forum Gallery presented Fenniak’s first one-person exhibition in the United States. An established figurative artist and vastly talented painter, his work has been widely collected both in Canada and America.
Paul Fenniak paints detailed narrative portraits and figures in settings with implied action. Deep in thought, Fenniak’s subjects are contemporary in setting but reminiscent of studied portraits that follow the tradition of the late artist Raphael Soyer, also represented by Forum Gallery. Paul Fenniak’s paintings have luminous surfaces and compelling images that offer a combination of disquiet, uncertainty, urgency, calm, and spirituality. His painting style contains a contrast of inner light with his attention to detail, texture and atmosphere.
This unique vision has been recognized with grants from the Pollock-Krasner Foundation in 2000, the Elizabeth Foundation for the Arts in 1998 and the Elizabeth Greenshields Foundation in 1993 and 1994. Recent one-person exhibitions were at Forum Gallery in New York (2009, 2004 and 1999), Galerie de Bellefeuille in Montreal (2002 and 1996) and The Mendel Art Gallery, Saskatoon, Canada (2000). Paul Fenniak’s work has also been included in group exhibitions at Arkansas Art Center’s “Collector’s Show” in Little Rock (2003), Arnot Art Museums “Re-presenting Representation IV” in Elmira, New York (2000), and most recently at Indiana University’s Grunwald Gallery exhibition “Slow Hand” in Bloomington (2015).
Peter Krausz’s paintings pay homage to the renewal and the constancy of nature. By inventing landscapes from memory and observation, he creates a universal time and place that deeply resonate within the viewer. The artist finds a balance between nature and man where the human spirit is in each hillside and valley, therefore becoming a connection to things past, present, and even future. None of us has visited these fictional places, but Krausz uses the riches of human memory to deliver an experience mysterious yet familiar.
Using a classical painting technique he calls secco, Peter Krausz obtains colors by mixing pure pigments with egg emulsion applied on a wall-like surface. By capturing sunny fields flooded with luscious greens, fiery reds and deep ochres, he translates color into emotion.
Peter Krausz was born in Romania in 1946 and completed his studies at the Bucharest Academy of Fine Arts in 1969. In 1991, he joined the faculty at the University of Montreal where he is now a tenured Professor of Fine Art. His works are in many Canadian collections including Musée d’art Contemporain, Montréal, Musée du Québec, and Banque Royale du Canada.
Born in New York City with the name Philip Blashki, he became, with the name Philip Evergood, one of the leading modernists of the 20th Century with styles combining abstraction and realism and subjects in the 1930s that made him one of the leading social realists of his time.
He was raised in London, England where he moved in 1909 with his parents until 1923. He studied at Eton and Cambridge University and then at the Slade School with Henry Tonks and Havard Thomas. Returning to New York, he was a student of George Luks and William von Schlegell at the Art Students League.
From 1924 to 1926, he traveled in Europe and studied in Paris at the Academie Julian and again lived abroad from 1929 to 1931. He was especially influenced by the Spanish artist El Greco. During the 1930s, he was a muralist for the W.P.A. in the Federal Art Project, and his mural work includes “The Story of Richmond Hill” for the library in that part of New York City, and another work, “Cotton from Field to Mill” for the Post Office in Jackson, Georgia.
Politically active, he served as President of the New York Artists Union. He also taught at various institutions in the 1940s, and in 1952 moved to Southbury, Connecticut and two years later to Bridgeport until his death.
In the 1920s and 1930s, he focused on many Biblical themes with a distorted style reflective of both Cezanne and El Greco in that his figures seemed to be in fanciful worlds or “imagined space”. (Baigell) By 1935, he did American Scene painting with politically and social-message works whose themes were the unhappiness of people caught in the Depression. In the 1940s, he distanced himself from political and social issues to figures that were more fanciful and free seeming.
“Dictionary of American Art”
Preston Dickinson (1891–1930) – Known for his Precisionist style of painting depicting architectural subjects, especially industrial scenes, Preston Dickinson was a native of New York City who studied at the Art Students League from 1906 to 1910 with George Bellows and Ernest Lawson.
Shortly after he left for Paris, where he lived from 1915 to 1919 and exhibited at the Salon des Artistes Français. In Paris, he was much influenced by Cubism, which for him was somewhat modified by his exposure to the work of Paul Cezanne.
Returning to New York, he showed at the Daniel Gallery. An inveterate traveler, he returned to Europe in 1930, hoping to live there but died of pneumonia.
Raphael Soyer (1899–1987) was born on Christmas Day in 1899 in Tombov, Russia. He later traveled to the United States with his family and settled in Manhattan, at the impressionable age of twelve. Although they had to leave high school to contribute to the family income, Raphael and his twin brother, Moses, enrolled in drawing lessons at Cooper Union in 1914. Four years later, Raphael enrolled in the National Academy of Design and afterwards, studied with Guy Pene du Bois at the Art Students League. Du Bois encouraged him to be himself and paint what he knew, his family and environment. Raphael Soyer took this to heart, rejecting the strict academic style of the time for a more personal style.
With the endorsement of du Bois, Soyer brought his paintings to the Daniel Gallery, and soon had his first solo exhibition there in 1929, the year of the stock market crash. Incredibly, some sales were made, and the exhibition was reviewed favorably. During this year, Soyer made the commitment to give up his day job, rent a studio on the lower East Side, and paint full-time. As the suffering economy began to impact people’s lives, Raphael Soyer portrayed the unemployed as subjects in his work. As he made these genre paintings, he also painted the intimate portraits and self-portraits that he would continue for the next fifty years.
As his vision and reputation grew, Soyer showed regularly in the large annual and biennial American exhibitions of the Whitney Museum, The Carnegie Institute, the Art Institute of Chicago, the Corcoran Gallery of Art, the National Academy of Design and the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts. His work is now in the public collections of these institutions, and also in many others major collections, such as Bezalel National Museum, Jerusalem, Cleveland Museum of Art, Ohio, National Collections of Fine Arts, Washington D.C., Philadelphia Museum of Fine Art, The Phillips Collection, Washington D.C., Museum of Modern Art, New York, Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, The Jewish Museum, New York, Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington D.C., and Fogg Art Museum, Cambridge, Massachusetts.
A revered and beloved artist, Raphael Soyer continued his love of depicting the American experience throughout his long life, until his death in 1987.
Raymond Han is an American artist born in Hawaii in 1931. After study with Willson Stamper at the Honolulu Academy of Arts, Raymond Han came to New York and studied at the Art Students League with Frank Mason and Robert Beverly Hale.
Early on, Raymond Han’s still-life paintings were shown at the National Academy of Design, Dorsky Gallery, Nordness Gallery, Babcock Gallery, Alan Gallery and The Downtown Gallery, all in New York. In 1982, Raymond Han joined Robert Schoelkopf Gallery (New York), an association that lasted until Mr. Schoelkopf’s death in 1991. Since joining Forum Gallery in 1992, Raymond Han has had several one-person exhibitions with the gallery. He has also been included in museum exhibitions in Scranton, Pennsylvania; Loretto, Pennsylvania; and Bridgeport, Connecticut and has had two one-person museum shows, one in Honolulu and another at the Everson Museum of Art in Syracuse.
Raymond Han’s paintings are included in the corporate collections of Philip Morris, Inc.; General Electric Company; Chemical Bank; Goldman, Sachs and Company; and Moody’s Investment Service, Inc.; and in the permanent collections of the Picker Art Gallery at Colgate College (Hamilton, NY), the Honolulu Academy of Arts and the Munson-Williams-Proctor Institute (Utica, NY).
Born in 1898 in Paris, Reginald Marsh grew up in New Jersey. In 1920 he graduated from Yale and continued his studies at the Art Students League of New York under the tutelage of John Sloan, George Luks, and Kenneth Hayes Miller. Throughout the 1920s Marsh supported himself as an illustrator for the New York Daily News, Harper’s Bazaar and many other periodicals. Between 1922 and 1925 he produced more than 4,000 illustrations for the Daily News alone.
Though a great admirer of Peter Paul Rubens and Eugène Delacroix, Marsh used contemporary subject matter in his work to depict urban life in all its tawdry aspects. His fascination with the human crowd was entirely individual for an artist of Marsh’s time, best exemplified in his unforgettable portrayals of Coney Island Beach, his crowded subways, burlesque scenes, and Bowery bums. Though defined as a second generation Ashcan School artist in the vein of George Luks and John Sloan, it is the Depression-era work of Reginald Marsh which is best remembered and admired. Marsh remains the most significant artistic figure of this genre in the United States and has been the subject of major retrospectives.
“Behind its public face, Reginald Marsh’s art is determined by a singular and personal vision – a vision that took him of the past and to the present.
Indeed, while at first glance his paintings and prints evoke New York in the 1930s, with its tawdry amusement parks and brazen floozies, at another glance they evoke scenes from the art historical past, Last Judgments and Rapes of the Sabine Women. At some point the Bowery, burlesque, and beach ceased to be real places for Marsh. Within the crowds lurked a limited set of characters that endlessly played out his more private themes: men and women, spectator and performer, seeing and not seeing. These themes, which fully emerged in the 1930s, occupied him for the rest of his life and kept him sketching, photographing, printmaking and painting incessantly. Only by exploring both the social and personal levels of his art can we finally see Reginald Marsh’s New York”. (Cohen, Marilyn, Reginald Marsh’s New York, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, 1983)
Robert Bauer was born in Iowa in 1942, and studied at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts in Philadelphia. Work shown in the Academy’s “1967 Annual Exhibition of Painting and Sculpture” led to his inclusion in the show “Four Young Realists” at Kenmore Galleries, Philadelphia. In 1969, Mr. Bauer’s work was featured in the “33rd Mid-Year Annual” at the Butler Institute of American Art, Youngstown, OH. Following a number of solo and group exhibitions, his work attracted the attention of New York dealer Allan Stone, who collected and exhibited his paintings in the early 1980s.
Mr. Bauer’s work was selected for inclusion in the Janss Collection of American Realism, and was exhibited in that collection at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art in 1985, a show which later travelled to other museums throughout the United States. He moved to Boston in 1985 and began to exhibit there at the Thomas Segal Gallery in 1986. His work was first shown by Forum Gallery, New York in a group landscape exhibition in 1990.
Since joining Forum Gallery, Robert Bauer’s work has been exhibited in the Pratt Institute’s Manhattan Gallery, the “1996-1997 Best of the Season” exhibition at the Aldrich Museum of Contemporary Art in Ridgefield, CT, and the “Invitational Exhibition of Painting and Sculpture” at the American Academy of Arts and Letters, New York, in 1997. Portrait paintings were shown in “New Old Masters,” Naples Art Museum, Naples, FL, in 2005 , and in the inaugural portrait exhibition at the new National Portrait Gallery, Washington, DC in 2006. In 2009 his work was included in “Enchantment: The Sixth International Distinguished Artist Symposium & Exhibition” at the Joseloff Gallery, University of Hartford, CT.
In addition, Bauer’s work has been regularly exhibited at major art fairs in San Francisco, Los Angeles, Chicago, Miami and New York.
Robert Bauer is the recipient of fellowships from the National Endowment For The Arts, the Massachusetts Cultural Council, and the Pollock-Krasner Foundation. His paintings and drawings are included in private, museum and corporate collections in the United States, Canada and Mexico.
Robert Cottingham was born in Brooklyn, New York in 1935 and received his BFA degree from Pratt Institute, also in Brooklyn. Later, he studied art at Arts Center College of Design in Pasadena, CA, and began his career as an advertising art director in Los Angeles. Cottingham’s first easel paintings were of scenes outside his office window in Los Angeles.
Although he is known for his photo-realistic depictions of signs, storefront marquees and railroad boxcars and letter forms, Cottingham does not consider himself a photorealist artists. His imagery, while derived from photographs he takes, expands on the photographic image, it does not replicate it. Most recently, Cottingham has explored images derived from cameras, typewriters and machine parts he calls “components”.
Works by Robert Cottingham are in the collections of every important museum in America and have been included in exhibitions of American art, realism, hyper-realism, photorealism, railroad imagery and printmaking at museums worldwide.
A retrospective of Robert Cottingham’s print work was organized and exhibited by the National Museum of American Art, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC in 1998.
Forum Gallery introduced Robert Cottingham’s landmark An American Alphabet at his first exhibition with the gallery in 1996 and has represented the artist since.
Robert Henri was born in Cincinnati, in 1865. In 1886, Henri enrolled at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, where he studied under Thomas Anshutz, Thomas Hovenden, and James B. Kelly. In 1888, he went to Paris and enrolled at the Académie Julian under Adolphe-William Bouguereau and Tony Robert-Fleury. During the summers, he painted in Brittany and Barbizon, and visited Italy prior to being admitted to the École des Beaux-Arts in 1891. He returned to Philadelphia late that year, and in 1892, resumed studying at the academy. He also began his long and influential career as an art teacher at the School of Design for Women, where he taught until 1895. During this period, he met the young newspaper illustrators who would later achieve fame as members of “The Eight,” John Sloan, William Glackens, George Luks, and Everett Shinn. He made regular trips to Paris, where he was particularly influenced by Edouard Manet, Frans Hals, and Diego Velázquez.
In 1900, Henri settled in New York and taught at the New York School of Art from 1902 to 1908. He gradually began to reject the genteel traditions of academic painting and impressionism, and turned his attention to urban realist subjects executed in a bold, painterly style. In 1906, he was elected to the National Academy of Design, and that summer he taught in Spain. When the academy refused to exhibit works by Henri’s circle in its 1907 annual show, he resolved to organize an independent exhibition. The result was the famous show of “The Eight” held at the Macbeth Gallery in February of 1908. Between 1911 and 1919; he arranged jury-free exhibitions at the MacDowell Club, and in 1913, he helped the Association of American Painters and Sculptors organize the Armory Show.
Henri was an important portraitist and figure painter, and considered by his contemporaries a progressive and influential teacher. His ideas on art and color theory were collected by former pupil Margery Ryerson and published as The Art Spirit (Philadelphia, 1923). He died in 1929 at the age of sixty-four.
Salvador Felipe Jacinto Dali was born May 11, 1904 in the small Spanish town of Figueras in the province of Catalunya. The name ‘Salvador’ had been given to an older brother who died in infancy. When Dali was born the name was passed on to him. No one could have known just how revolutionary and important this name would become to the art world. Growing up, Dali was a difficult child and refused to conform to family or community customs. Dali’s father, a respected notary, his mother and younger sister all encouraged Dali’s early interest in art. In fact, a room in the family home was the young artist’s first studio. Early on, Dali’s talent was already refined beyond his years, and with each year his talent only grew, as did his interests.
Under the influence of the surrealist movement, Dali’s artistic style crystalized into the disturbing blend of precise realism and dreamlike fantasy that became his trademark. His paintings combined meticulous draftsmanship and detail with a unique and stimulating imagination. Dali often described his pictures as `hand-painted dream photographs,’ and had certain favorite and recurring images, such as the human figure with half-open drawers protruding from it, burning giraffes, and watches bent and flowing as if made from melting wax. Dali moved to the U.S. in 1940, where he remained until 1948. His later paintings, often on religious themes, are more classical in style. Dali truly created a new movement in art, but it was his own unique brand. Along with his other pursuits in the art realm – which included jewelry design, film production and clothing — it is his paintings and graphic works which remain the pinnacle of his sweeping importance and mystifying genius. To this day, they hang in museums all over the world.
Salvador Dali died January 23, 1989.
Sam Francis (1923–1994) was an influential and important abstract expressionist, included (with James Brooks, Franz Kline, Larry Rivers and Philip Guston) in the landmark 12 Americans exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art in 1956. Prolific and bold in his use of color and form, Francis had solo exhibtions at important galleries in Paris, New York and London during the next three years, and at the Pasadena Art Museum, California traveling to the San Francisco Museum of Art and the Seattle Art Museum in 1959. Exhibitions followed in Switzerland, Sweden, Germany and Japan, and his first retrospective was presented by the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston and the San Francisco Museum of Art in 1967. Influenced by Clyfford Styll and Mark Rothko, Francis developed a unique style and an individual approach to color that has made his work among the most highly collected abstraction in the world.
A native of England, Sean Henry (b. 1965) made the decision to create sculpture at the age of eighteen after becoming inspired by the artwork he saw while visiting Florence, Italy.
The theme of Henry’s sculpture is the tension between the making and staging of figures that seem to belong to the real world, and the degree to which they echo our experiences and sympathies.
Sean Henry’s sculptures are individually painted by the artist using oil paint on the bronze surface. Each sculpture is like a three-dimensional painting, and the technique makes it possible for Henry to infuse his works with personality and character. Henry’s figures, like those of Albert Giacometti, are frozen in time, as if poised and about to move. But unlike Giacometti or any modern sculptor, Henry’s oil painting technique gives a sense of personal immediacy and depth of emotion to every figure.
Henry has been exhibited widely throughout the United States and Europe. Over the years he has shown at the Royal Festival Hall, London, The Victoria and Albert Museum, London, England, The Society of Sculptors, London, England, Glasgow Art Fair, Scotland, Salisbury Cathedral, UK, Holdsworth Galleries, Sydney, Australia, and Art Miami, Art Chicago, The Armory Show, The Art Show and at art fairs in Los Angeles, Dallas and the Hamptons in the U.S.
Henry’s work is in many international collections including National Portrait Gallery, London, Sculpture at Goodwood, England; City Centre, Newcastle-Upon-Tyne; Frisia Museum, Spanbroek, Netherlands; University of Virginia Art Museum, Charlottesville; Paddington Central, London; Le Meridien Cumberland Hotel, Marble Arch, London; Golden Square, Soho, London, the Ekebergparken sculpture park in Oslo, Norway, the city of Stockholm, Newbiggen Bay in the UK and the Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park, Grand Rapids, MI.
Sean Henry was most recently celebrated at the National Portrait Gallery in London where his commissioned portrait of Sir Tim Berners-Lee, inventor of the World Wide Web was first presented to the public.
Sidney Gordin (1918–1996) – Born in Cheliabinsk, Russia. After spending his first years in China, Gordin came to New York with his family in 1922. He studied at Cooper Union from 1937- 41. Strongly influenced by earlier examples of Constructivist art, Gordin produced works in a purely geometric idiom. He was commissioned to do sculpture in Oklahoma, New York and for the Symphony Hall in San Francisco. Gordin taught at Pratt Institute, Brooklyn College, New School for Social Research, Sarah Lawrence and the University of California, Berkeley.
Beginning in 1951, Sidney Gordin exhibited regularly at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Museum of Modern Art and the Oakland Museum. Sidney Gordin was a member of American Abstract Artists and is represented in the collections of the Lowe Art Museum, Neuberger Museum of Art, Oakland Museum of California, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and the Whitney Museum of American Art.
A painter and muralist and leader of the Synchromist movement, Stanton MacDonald-Wright (1890–1973) had a lengthy career of painting that alternated between abstraction and figurative and expressive of his interest in relationships between color and form and Oriental art.
He was born in Charlottesville, Virginia. In 1901, he ran away from home on a windjammer to Los Angeles and studied there at the Art Students League and with Joseph Greenbaum.
With deep regret, Forum Gallery notes the passing of Susan Hauptman on July 21, 2015. Her contribution to the arts was extraordinary.
An obituary appeared in the October Art in America.
Susan Hauptman received an M.F.A from Wayne State University in Detroit in 1970.
Since then, she had one-person exhibitions at fine venues, including the Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.; the Norton Gallery of Art, West Palm Beach, Florida; the Georgia Museum of Art, Athens, Georgia; the Huntington Museum of Art, Huntington, West Virginia; and the Triton Museum, Santa Clara, California. Her work has also been shown at the San Francisco Museum of Art, the Arkansas Art Center, the Katonah Museum, the Knoxville Museum of Art, the Yale University Art Museum, the Arnot Art Museum, and the Oakland Museum of Art.
She received numerous grants including two from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Adolph and Esther Gottlieb Foundation, and the Pollock-Krasner Foundation. Additionally she had been given awards by the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters and the Oakland Museum of Art.
Her teaching experience includes Visiting Artist positions at Harvard University, the San Francisco Art Institute, the University of California at Davis, and the Lamar Dodd Professional Chair at the University of Georgia.
Hauptman’s drawings are in numerous museum collections including those of the National Portrait Gallery, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Corcoran Gallery, the Norton Gallery, the Arkansas Art Center, the Minnesota Museum of Art and the California Palace of the Legion of Honor. Among her private collectors are Glenn Janss, Richard Brown Baker, Robert Kogod, Lee Grant, the Chase Manhattan Bank, Dean Witter, and Pacific Bell.
Tom Wesselmann (1931–2004) was an American painter, sculptor and printmaker. He planned to become a cartoonist until his final year at the Cooper Union in New York, where he studied from 1956 to 1959 and was encouraged to become a painter. The powerful work of Willem de Kooning provided both inspiration and inhibition as he attempted to find a new direction centered around a tangible subject. Choosing the figure he began to make small collages of torn paper and found materials, as in the Little Great American Nudes of 1961–2; these culminated in large, aggressive compositions called Great American Nude. These and giant still-lifes composed of common household objects and collage elements culled from popular advertising images, brought him fame and notoriety as a founder of American Pop art. In the late 1960s an increasingly dominant eroticism emerged in his through more literal but still intense colors and tight, formal composition. The pictorial elements, exaggerated in their arabesque forms and arbitrary coloring, became significantly larger in scale in his works of the 1970s, such as a series of Smoker mouths; enormous, partially free-standing still-lifes moved into sculptural space, and finally became discrete sculptures of sheet metal.
In the 1980s he returned to works for the wall with cut-out steel or aluminum drawings which replicate his familiar, graceful line in enamel on cut-out metal. He was also an innovative printmaker, adapting his imagery to lithographs, screenprints, aquatints and multiples in relief. An important retrospective of his work was held in Japan in 1993–4.
Tula Telfair spent her childhood in West Central Africa. A grant recipient and graduate of Moore College of Art in Philadelphia, Ms. Telfair then became a graduate fellow, receiving her Masters of Fine Arts degree from Syracuse University. In 1989, She was hired as an Assistant Professor of Art at Wesleyan University in Middletown, CT, where shortly thereafter, she became Chair of the Department of Art and Art History, and then Acting Academic Dean of the Arts and Humanities. She currently serves as a full professor of Art.
Painting all the while at her studio in Manhattan, Ms. Telfair has exhibited at galleries in Chicago, Philadelphia, New York and Connecticut and her paintings have been included in Museum exhibitions throughout the United States. Hers is a progressive art, a continuous exploration like each individual painting. The works might seem to contain the panoramic observations found in 19th Century American landscapes, depictions of awe-inspiring locales the artist has visited. In actuality, her worlds are invented vistas, fully contemporary in their inspiration and execution, exceptional realizations of a conceptual world.
Tula Telfair has received many awards, including the Distinguished Honorary Artists Committee at MacDowell Colony (1998), Marion Locks Award for Excellence in Painting (1984) and Pennsylvania State Women Caucus Art Award (1980). Her work is included in numerous public collections, including the New Orleans Museum of Art, Redding Art Museum, and General Electric Corporation. Ms. Telfair recently had a solo exhibition at the Florence Griswold Museum, Old Lyme, Conneticut, entitled Landscapes in Counterpoint (2010).
Wade Schuman, born in 1962, has been awarded major scholarships and prizes, including The Mary Post Prize for Painting (Philadelphia), the Award for Excellence from the Philadelphia Museum of Art, three Visual Art Fellowship grants from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts and every possible prize and award from the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, where he graduated in 1986.
His work has been shown in many publications including The New York Times, the New Yorker, the Philadelphia Inquirer, Art in America, Slate, and The Sciences magazine. Over the past fifteen years, he has taught painting and drawing privately and at various institutions, including the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, the Academy of Natural Sciences in Philadelphia, and full-time at the New York Academy of Art.
Wade Schuman joined Forum Gallery in 1993 and has since exhibited at Forum, National Academy of Design (New York), Delaware Center for Contemporary Art (Wilmington), Everhart Museum (Scranton, PA), The Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts (Philadelphia), Miami-Dade Community College and a solo show at Huntington Museum of Art (Huntington, WV). His most recent solo exhibitions have been at the Arnot Art Museum (Elmira, NY) and the Sordoni Art Gallery, (Wilkes-Barre, PA).
Walt Kuhn (1877–1943) was born in Brooklyn, New York, the only one of eight brothers to survive childhood. In 1899, Kuhn began a leisurely trip West, eventually finding a job drawing cartoons for a San Francisco newspaper. Several years later, realizing the need for more training, Kuhn left for Europe to study in Paris and Munich.
“Boldly outlined, brusquely modeled, intensely expressive, and frozen in limelight against dark backgrounds, Kuhn’s portraits are unforgettable, disturbing paintings. Most present a frontal gaze that is at once hypnotic and that were considered startling in their day. Just as Rembrandt and van Gogh allow the viewer to pierce the facades of their sitters’ faces to look deeper into their beings, so Kuhn accomplishes the same thing, but in an almost eerie fashion.”1
Kuhn said he was forty years old before he painted a really worthwhile picture. In fact, he was over fifty when his long, frustrating search for a resolution to the problems confronting him as a painter was finally reached with completion of White Clown – a painting that was both his masterwork and an intensely personal symbol. He rarely exhibited the work after its debut at The Museum of Modern Art in New York, and would not allow it to be purchased during his lifetime.
In the next two decades of productive maturity Kuhn continued to paint show people, still lifes and landscapes. Though he wrote to a friend, “I have more or less arrived at the point where I can make my brushes carry out my instructions,” he continued to be highly self-critical. Fridolph Johnson wrote in a 1967 article in American Artist, “He ruthlessly destroyed more paintings than he preserved, and he never signed one until he was completely satisfied with it.”
In his last years Kuhn began to suffer increasing mental turmoil, finally becoming irrational and stormy. Concerned friends convinced his family to commit him to Bellevue Hospital in New York in late fall of 1948 and he died in a White Plains hospital the following summer.
1 Fridolf Johnson, “Walt Kuhn: American Master,” American Artist (December 1967): 52.
Creating work that resembles John James Audubon’s classic images of wildlife and birds, Walton Ford subverts them to narrative painting whereby he comments on contemporary society such as its desecration of nature.
He showed early art talent as a child who was raised in the South and then studied film making at the Rhode Island School of Design. A year in Italy studying Renaissance art changed the direction of his life, and from that time he applied Old Master techniques and styles to his unique subject matter.
He settled in the Hudson River Valley of upstate New York.
Bailey has moved from early experiments to the achievements of today, on the impulse of a youthful vocation for drawing, which took him from art school in the Midwest to the Korean War, to Yale, where he befriended De Kooning and Pollock, and to studies with Josef Albers. Bailey loved the past and repeatedly looked at the classics of European painting.
Bailey’s still-lifes (so often with suggestive Italian titles), are distinct domestic objects arranged frontally on top of a table that coincides with the line of the horizon. They stand against a barely modulated background with the studied conventional equilibrium of sculpture on the pediment of a Greek temple or the sanctity of objects set out on an altar.
Bailey picks up again tenaciously and faithfully the threads of a visual concern, of an aspect of the life of forms, that takes place over a long period of time and that runs as a current beneath the surface of contemporary art, emerging sometimes as a desire for order and formal beauty, even as contemporary expressions seem often to revolt against the past. For Bailey this formal aspect manifests itself as an explicit reference to historical sources, mainly in the need to fill the emptiness of space with the fullness of objects and to fill the fullness of space between objects through the severe dialectic of formal relations.
William Beckman was born in Maynard, Minnesota in 1942 and, after completing his undergraduate studies in his native state, studied art at the University of Iowa in Iowa City, receiving MA and MFA degrees in 1968.
Beckman began his New York exhibition career in a group show focused on Iowa in 1968 and soon attracted the attention of Allan Stone, at whose gallery the Artist had his first one-person exhibition in 1970. Notably, William Beckman was included in the landmark exhibition, Contemporary American Realism since 1960 organized in 1981 by Frank Goodyear at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. The show traveled to Virginia and California, and Beckman’ striking portrait and landscape had immediate and lasting impact.
William Beckman’s portraits were the subject of an individual exhibition at the opening of the newly-situated National Portrait Gallery in Washington, DC in 2006. His work is included in the collections of that museum, as well as theWhitney Museum of American Art (New York), Joseph H. Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden (Washington, DC), Museum Moderne Kunst (Vienna, Austria), The Art Institute of Chicago, The Carnegie Museum of Art (Pittsburgh, PA), Flint Institute of Arts (MI), Milwaukee Art Museum (WI), Columbus Museum of Art (GA), Des Moines Art Center (IA) and Frye Art Museum (Seattle, WA).
Throughout his career, William Beckman has used conventional media in unconventional ways. His unvarnished oil paintings on panel have a depth of image and surface quality uniquely his; it is achieved by a paintstaking process of layering oil paint on the panel and polishing each layer by hand before applying another. His oversize drawings, in charcoal on paper, make use of the charcoal dust and the grain of the paper in the creation of the powerful image.
William Beckman joined Forum Gallery in 1993.
William Fisk, (b. 1969) was raised in Toronto, Canada; and studied at both the Ontario College of Art and York University. He creates meticulously painted pictures of functional objects, large and small. Each bold composition is dramatic in scale and as a result becomes utterly seductive, striking and mesmerizing.
By portraying these objects in their present reductive format and traditional medium, the personal significance they once had for the artist and others is recalled through focusing on a specific object as a painted image. Their connection to William Fisk and posthumous individuals reminds us that there is a gap that exists between the autonomy of the objects and their connection to us. That connection represents an unrecorded history in relation to the significance those objects had for William and/or for other autonomous individuals.
William Fisk joined Forum Gallery’s roster in 2002.
William Gropper (1887–1977) was a remarkably versatile artist, skilled in a variety of media and disciplines including cartooning, painting and lithography. Throughout his life, he remained committed to using art as a vehicle to protest social and political injustice. Gropper’s subjects, which range from political figures to dispossessed farm workers, were rendered in the blunt and graphic terms associated with social realism.
Like many social realist artists of the 1930′s, Gropper became increasingly involved in the liberal and political causes of the time. He had begun to paint privately in 1921, and continued to work in oil throughout the 1930′s. The surfaces of his paintings, like the subjects he portrayed, are coarse and unrefined. Line is used to exaggerate gesture, and bold thick applications of color create striking spatial relationships.
As a muralist, Gropper completed several commissions, including the United States Post Office in Freeport, Long Island (1938) and the Northwestern Postal Station in Detroit (1941).
During Joseph McCarthy’s anti-communist campaign of the 1950′s, Gropper was asked to testify before the United States Senate. Despite the resulting adversity, he experienced a renewed popularity during the 1960′s. Before his death in 1977 he had gained recognition with his election to the prestigious National Institute of Arts and Letters in 1968.
Xenia Hausner was born in Vienna in 1951. After studies at the painting academy in Vienna and the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London, she began a career as a scenic designer at the Vienna Burgtheater in 1976.
From 1977 to 1992, Ms. Hausner designed more than 100 theater, opera and film productions, including those at the Shiller Theater, Berlin; the Thalia Theater, Hamburg; the Vienna State Opera; the Salzburg Festival; the Covent Garden Opera, London; and the Theatre de la Monnaie, Brussels.
Beginning in 1992, Ms. Hausner moved to Berlin and devoted herself completely to painting. Her work was introduced at the Martin Gropiusbau in Berlin in 1996 in an exhibition entitled “Die Kraft der Bilder” (The Craft of the Artist), and she was soon afforded one-person exhibitions in Salzburg and Vienna.
Later in 1996, Ms. Hausner had a one-person exhibition, “Menschenbilder” at Galerie Thomas in Munich, and Galerie Thomas introduced her work to an international audience with a featured presentation at Art Cologne. In 1997, a one-person exhibition, “Liebesfragmente” was presented at the Museum Quarter Kunsthalle of Vienna and at the Ludwig Museum in Leipzig.
Forum Gallery introduced Xenia Hausner’s work to the United States in 2000, when she was first exhibited in New York. That same year, Ms. Hausner was awarded the Ernst Barlach Art Prize (Hamburg, Germany), and had solo exhibitions at the Kathe-Kollwitz Museum in Berlin, State Russian Museum in St. Petersburg, and Museum of Modern Art in Salzburg. In recent years, she had solo exhibitions at Forum Gallery in Los Angeles and Charim Galerie in Wien, Austria, and an exhibition entitled, “Hide and Seek,” that traveled to the Ludwig Museum, Koblenz, in 2005, and Kunsthaus Wien, Vienna in 2006.
Xenia Hausner’s current “mixed media” works are unique, full-scale paintings that incorporate working photographs, collage elements and her signature acrylic painting into their complex and involving surfaces. Xenia Hausner has long taken many working photographs of each model that poses for her and she has often employed pieces of fabric, packing tape, wood pieces and other “props” as models for the backgrounds of her paintings. Now she incorporates the actual elements into the paintings, thus the term “mixed media.”
Steven Assael was born in New York City in 1957. A graduate of Pratt Institute, he focuses his work on the human figure, individually and in groups. Assael balances naturalism with a romanticism that permeates the figures and surroundings of his paintings and drawings. His figures are modeled in glowing relief by gentle beams of warm and cool light.
From October, 2010 to January, 2011, Steven Assael’s work was the subject of a one-person exhibition at the Naples (FL) Museum of Art. Assael’s paintings were included in the exhibition “New Old Masters”, curated by Donald Kuspit, at the National Museum in Gdansk, Poland in 2006. A retrospective exhibition was held at the Frye Art Museum, Seattle (WA) in 1999. Single-person exhibitions of works by Steven Assael have also been featured at the Cress Gallery of Art at the University of Tennessee, Lowe Gallery (Atlanta, GA) and Ann Nathan Gallery (Chicago, IL). His work has been exhibited at The Arkansas Arts Center, The New York Academy of Art and The Arnot Art Museum (Elmira, NY), and is in the permanent collections of The Hunter Museum of Art (Chatanooga, TN), The Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art & Design (Kansas City, MO), The Columbus Museum of Art (GA) and the Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York, NY).
Steven Assael joined Forum Gallery in 1998.
Lisa Bartolozzi received her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from the University of Delaware, and her Masters in Fine Arts degree from Washington University in St. Louis under the Jacob K. Javits Fellowship.
Infusing faith, meditation and her own personal experience, Lisa creates thought-provoking images of humanity. Part of her work focuses on what it means to be a woman and, more specifically, a woman artist. Drawing upon that idea and religion, each work not only becomes an interesting view of society but of history re-examined through a contemporary artist’s perspective. Her luminous paintings require layers of transparent pigments, which are then coated with wax. Thus her works achieve a Northern Renaissance look that allows her to unite the past with the present.
One person exhibitions of Lisa Bartolozzi’s work have been presented by the Delaware Division of the Arts under an Individual Artist Fellowship in 1992, the Samuel S. Fleisher Art Memorial in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1984, and the Delaware Art Museum in Wilmington, Delaware in 1997. Her work has been included in group exhibitions abroad with the Gruppo Donatello in Florence, Italy, the Vonderau Museum in Fulda, Germany, and the Kalmar Lans Museum in Kalmar, Sweden. She has also exhibited her work at the Aldrich Museum of Contemporary Art in Ridgefield, Connecticut, the Arnot Art Museum in Elmira, New York, the Philadelphia Museum of Art in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Spruill Center for the Arts in Atlanta, Georgia and The Kitchen and Knoedler & Company in New York City. Her work is included in numerous private and museum collections.
October 21, 2009
Colorado-born artist Stephen Brown passed away in his home in Granville, MA, surrounded by his loving family, at the age of 59, in October, 2009.
Stephen adored figurative, landscape, and still-life painting. He derived his artistic inspiration from the work of George Inness, Edward Hopper, Jack Beal, and Raphael Soyer whose work led him to Forum Gallery. The gallery began representing Stephen in 1994, first exhibiting him in three group shows in 1995 before giving him two solo exhibitions in 2000 and 2004.
Stephen painted highly personal subjects, whether portraits, landscapes of his native Colorado, or ordinary household objects. The intimate scale he favored belies the emotional impact he achieved by his unique ability to paint images of profound clarity and blunt honesty. Stephen had a special ability to depict for us not just what his subjects were, but what they had “lived” through.
Stephen was a gifted teacher and taught at the Hartford Art School at the University of Hartford, CT. He had a generous spirit towards both students and fellow artists, and his contribution towards the education of a new generation of artists will be remembered.
Stephen’s talents were noted in his lifetime by the American Academy of Arts and Letters, NY, who awarded him the Academy Award for Painting in 1994. The same year he was also the recipient of the Benjamin Altman Award for landscape from the National Academy of Design, NY.
Stephen’s work has been collected by the Hofstra Museum, Hempstead, NY; the Mattatuck Museum, Waterbury, CT; the Albany Museum, Albany, GA; The Speed Museum, Louisville, KY; and the New Britain Museum of American Art, New Britain, CT.
Stephen was a warm, sensitive and loving soul, a gifted artist, and a wonderful father to his two children. He will be deeply missed by all who knew him.
Contributions in Stephen’s name may be directed to the Milestone Ministries for the Homeless, 34-40 Front Street, Building 6L, 2nd Floor, Indian Orchard, MA 01151.
Steven Assael was born in New York, New York in 1957. He attended Pratt Institute and presently teaches at The School of Visual Arts in New York. Mr. Assael balances naturalism with a romanticism that permeates the figures and surroundings of his paintings and drawings. The focus of his work is the human figure, either individually or in a group, rendered in glowing relief by gentle beams of warm and cool light. Steven Assael’s classical talents are as rare as they are essential to the diverse art world of the late Twentieth Century.
Assael has had several solo shows nationally in recent months, including the Columbus Museum of Art, Cress Gallery of Art at the University of Tennessee, Lowe Gallery in Atlanta, and Forum Gallery in Los Angeles. In 1999, a retrospective one-person exhibition was held at the Frye Art Museum in Seattle, Washington. Steven Assael’s work has also been exhibited at The Arkansas Arts Center, (AR), The New York Academy of Art, (NY), The Arnot Art Museum in (NY) and is represented in the public collections of The Hunter Museum of Art in Chattanooga, (TN), The Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art & Design (MO), The Columbus Museum of Art (Columbus, OH) and the Metropolitan Museum of Art (NY).