Monday, September 22, 2014

Famous Women Artists: Helen Frankenthaler

Famous Women Artists: Helen Frankenthaler
This post is part of my "famous women artists" series where I turn the spotlight on different women artists. This week we focus on modern painter Helen Frankenthaler.

Abstract Expressionist

Helen Frankenthaler was part of the group of abstract expressionist painters who studied under Hans Hoffman in the 1950's. Being in this group of artists exposed her to the highest levels of art society and she became a close personal friend of the influential art critic Clement Greenberg. Greenberg took Frankenthaler to the studio of Jackson Pollock where she witnessed first hand the painting his style which she called "cooperation by chance." Frankenthaler evolved the idea further by creating paintings on the floor by thinning paint and then pouring it onto raw canvas.

Bridge Between Pollock and Color Field Painters

Frankenthaler is cited as the bridge between Pollock and the color field paintings that came after her which is why I included her in my blog post: Ten Women Artists Every Young Girl Should know About

Famous Women Artists: Helen Frankenthaler
Here is Helen Frankenthaler in her studio. My artist friends and I always comment about how we often dress to match our paintings and vice versa. You can see the coral in her blouse echoed in the coral on the painting against the wall, which looks like her famous "Mountains and Sea" paitning. Frankenthaler's paintings were created, like Pollock's, on the floor.
Famous Women Artists: Helen Frankenthaler
Frankenthaler's seminal work: "Mountains and Sea" is one of her most famous and pivotal works. This painting is often cited as the bridge between Jackson Pollock's work and color field paintings like Mark Rothko.

Famous Women Artists: Helen Frankenthaler

If you are in New York, try to get to Composing with Color at the Gagosian Gallery. You will see works like this one. The Color Field artist Helen Frankenthaler’s “Cool Summer” (1962), at Gagosian Gallery. Credit 2014 Helen Frankenthaler Foundation, Inc./Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York; Gagosian Gallery

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Where you can see Frankenthaler's paintings now...

Frankenthaler's paintings are included in the permanent collections of major museums worldwide including The Museum of Modern Art, The Museum of Fine Arts in Boston and the Centre Pompidou in Paris. You can also see her art in a solo exhibition at the Gagosian Gallery and included in a group exhibition at the Neuberger Museum. Details below.

Current Exhibitions in New York

“Helen Frankenthaler: Composing With Color: Paintings 1962-1963” runs through Oct. 18 at Gagosian Gallery, 980 Madison Avenue, near 76th Street

"When Modern was Contemporary" at the Neuberger Museum in Purchase, New York though December 15, 2014.
Famous Women Artists: Helen Frankenthaler

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What do you think of these ethereal paintings?