Lee Krasner, Hiding in Plain Sight

The New York Times

August 19, 2019

A tangle of drips in all directions; a hazy rectangle in a field of dark pigment; a rigid zip down an empty canvas … To be an Abstract Expressionist in New York’s buoyant first postwar years, it helped to have a signature look. Yet Lee Krasner was suspicious of paintings where telltale marks were like alternative autographs — even when the autograph was her own husband’s.

She was proud not to have a single style. You had to figure out each painting on its own, she said, or you end up with something “rigid rather than being alive.”

Tough, diligent, and deadly serious about the history of art, Krasner might have been the most intelligent of the painters who convinced the world in the late 1940s that New York had displaced Paris as the epicenter of modern art. That intelligence expressed itself through an art that ricocheted across styles and media, from tightly massed collages to huge abstractions of Matissean richness.

At the Barbican

London Review of Books

August 15, 2019

The Lee Krasner retrospective at the Barbican (until 1 September) is not to be missed. It is rare these days to be given a chance to assess the seriousness and beauty of the best Abstract Expressionist painting. The style is unfashionable: it is thought to be overwrought, supersized, ‘American’ in a 1950s way (‘great again’) and heavy with male cigarette smoke. Krasner had her opinions about all these charges, which are far from empty: the small room containing four paintings she did in 1956 – Prophecy, Birth, Embrace, Three in Two – is about as frightening a pictorial space as can be imagined. Its vision of glamour and nudity and sex is ghastly, which doesn’t mean the paintings lack powder-puff appeal. Pin-up grins have never been closer to screams of pain.

Go Inside Artist Bernar Venet’s Stunning Estate in the South of France


August 9, 2019

What Richard Serra is to steel slabs, Bernar Venet is to steel bars. Venet may be less famous than his counterpart, but he is a giant of modern sculpture in his own right and, like Serra, a master at bending massive pieces of weathered steel to his will.

Since the 1960s, Venet has been producing endless variations on his complex tangles, bundles, and piles of ruddy steel. Ranging from rigorously geometric to almost spontaneous in feeling, all of his pieces are products of a meticulous conceptual approach. One might imagine the 78-year-old Venet, the holder of a knighthood in France’s National Order of the Legion of Honour, as a grand old figure sketching in a leather-bound notebook at his Provençal estate as the wind whistles through the cypresses. But non.

Painters of the East End

The Brooklyn Rail

August 2, 2019

Many of the European avant-garde artists who arrived in New York during World War II found themselves reaching out for a less expensive kind of living, and discovered larger studios in a rural landscape and waterscape on Long Island’s South Fork. In the mid-twentieth century, a group of women painters developed there a collaborative community sharing a culture mingling bohemian instincts and creative inspiration. This kind of art colony thrived on their interwoven affinities, gossip, affection, envies, and dislikes. Gathered there were Lee Krasner, Elaine de Kooning, whose painting on board of 1949 has the side-sway of Lyonel Feininger’s oddly European buildings, and also Jane Freilicher with her gorgeous landscapes, as well as Joan Mitchell, whose paintings instantly stand out anywhere, as happens with the most striking figures of various groups and periods, reminding me of how, for instance, Charles Olson’s being and writing stood out in Black Mountain College times.

James Nares Suspends Himself Over The Canvas To Create Large-Scale, Single-Swipe Paintings


July 31, 2019

Over the course of a five-decade career, british artist James Nares has worked across film, music, painting, photography, and performance to explore physicality, motion, and the unfolding of time. In the 1980s, Nares, who has been living and working in New York since 1974, began to create his monumental brushstroke paintings, made using brushes of his own manufacture, recording a gestural passage of time and motion across the canvas. His work is included in many public and private collections including the the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), and the Whitney Museum of Art, while at the moment, NARES:MOVES, a career-spanning retrospective is on at the Milwaukee Art Museum.

Before the Galleries Close Up Shop This August, Here Are 5 Summer Group Shows You Won’t Want to Miss

artnet news

July 29, 2019

Ninth Street Women fans, this is the show for you!  A small but engaging exhibition, “Painters of the East End” brings into dialogue the works of a group of mid-century Modernist painters who left New York City for the expansive studios, untamed nature, and bohemian lifestyles made possible in South Fork of Long Island. Here, artists who have been obscured by the passage of time, like the great Abstract Expressionists Mary Abbott and Perle Fine, are presented alongside alongside Helen Frankenthaler, Elaine de Kooning, Lee Krasner, and Joan Mitchell, giving a refreshing sense of cohesion, depth, and detail to the era.

Critic's Notebook: Painters of the East End

The New Criterion

July 23, 2019

What’s immediately clear upon entry into “Painters of the East End,” a summery exhibition at Kasmin Gallery’s 297 Tenth Avenue space, is that, unlike previous generations of Long Island painters, these midcentury artists shared no discernably unified style, ranging from various modes of non-objective painting to sensitively observed modernist realism. Rather, the painters included here (who happen all to be women—among them are rock-stars like Helen Frankenthaler, Jane Freilicher, Elaine de Kooning, Krasner, and Joan Mitchell) share what we may call a distinct sensibility, one surely influenced, if intangibly so, by the open skies and fresh air of the East End. The show is a blast of cool oxygen for these hot and heavy city days.

James Nares, an Artist Known for Mapping New York’s Changing Landscape, Is Now Navigating a Deeply Personal Transition of His Own


July 15, 2019

The late, great writer Glenn O’Brien once said that James Nares might sound a bit British, but he’s a New Yorker at heart. Nares does speak with a latent, languid London accent, but there are few artists whose work has embodied the thrum of New York like his.

You can make the argument, as Nares has, that the defining characteristic of the city is its streets. Much of the artist’s work has located itself there, specifically the street surface, the textural layer of the concrete and asphalt and all the visual information caked into it. Since his arrival to New York in 1974, the street has been Nares’s great protagonist and, in the intervening years, he has spent a lot of time looking down.

12 Incredible Group Shows to See in New York This Summer


July 10, 2019

Removed from the crowded city, the Hamptons has been an inspiration for artists since the mid–twentieth century. In this exhibition, Kasmin gathers the work of 11 iconic female painters from that community who were drawn to the open fields and rolling seas of the South Fork of Long Island. On display will be work by well-known talents such as Mary Abbott, Helen Frankenthaler, Lee Krasner, and Joan Mitchell, as well as those deserving of it, such as Betty Parsons, who was also known as a collector and dealer of Abstract Expressionism.

Kasmin Releases Unseen Stuart Davis Material


July 11, 2019

Kasmin gallery is publishing a scholarly catalogue drawing on the archive of jazz-influenced American painter Stuart Davis, whose estate it has represented since 2018. Developed in collaboration with the artist’s son, Earl Davis, Stuart Davis: Self Portrait includes personal correspondence, family photographs, sketchbooks, and calendar pages. It will be published in fall 2020.

Artist David Wiseman Debuts a Dreamlike Wallpaper Collection

Architectural Digest

July 10, 2019

After a solo show at Kasmin gallery this spring spurred an artistic epiphany, David Wiseman returned to drawing.

9 Art Events in New York


July 8, 2019

This exhibition focuses on artists working on New York’s Long Island in the mid-20th century. The show will examine the dialogues and divergences among pieces by Helen Frankenthaler, Elaine de Kooning, Lee Krasner, Joan Mitchell, and other artists who drew inspiration from the natural landscape of the South Fork.

Private view: must-see gallery shows

The Art Newspaper

July 2, 2019

The Hamptons on New York’s Long Island have long proved an accessible summer escape from the city and, in the mid-20th century an enclave of artists built the so-called East End into a centre of collaborative creativity. It was not just landscape artists who flocked there, but also Surrealists, Abstract Expressionists and Pop artists. This exhibition explores how the visual imagery of the seascape and the bohemian synergy of the community influenced some of the era’s leading female artists such as Mary Abbott, Helen Frankenthaler, Elaine de Kooning, Lee Krasner, Joan Mitchell, Jane Freilicher and Betty Parsons.

Painters of the East End

The New Yorker

July 8, 2019

During the summer months of the mid-twentieth century, the epicenter of the New York School shifted from the Cedar Tavern, in Greenwich Village, to the South Fork of Long Island. In the exhibition “Painters of the East End,” the Kasmin gallery focusses on eleven women from that community. (“Seed No. 10,” a 1969 gouache by Lee Krasner, is pictured here.) Some of the artists are well established (Helen Frankenthaler, Joan Mitchell); others deserve heightened attention (Betty Parsons, better known as a gallerist).

Brancusi: The Photographer

Financial Times

June 20, 2019

New York dealer Paul Kasmin has spotted an art market trend that chimes with his current exhibition of photographs by the sculptor Constantin Brancusi: works by major artists in an atypical medium. The vast price difference between the media plays a part. Most are photographs of his sculptures, including self-portraits of the artist working in his studio, and are rare sightings on the market: “You’re unlikely to see more than four a year,” Kasmin adds. Brancusi: The Photographer runs until June 29.

James Nares: Monuments

Brooklyn Rail

June 25, 2019

Nares moved from London to Manhattan in 1974, and has used the city ever since as his stage set and subject, looking at it from all directions while translating his motive yet penetrative gaze via many artistic mediums. His present series of formidable paintings tower over visitors on the high walls of Kasmin’s airy new gallery space, but they are the successful products of a concerted effort to look down. To notice the particularities of the pavement beneath one’s feet. To render those surfaces in a remarkably tactile manner. To refer to bodies and histories in a way that Nares’s art always has—by Jason Rosenfeld

Milwaukee Art Museum opens first-ever Nares retrospective


June 13, 2019

This week, Milwaukee Art Museum opens what is, rather astonishingly, the first retrospective show of works by British-born, New York-based artist Jamie Names. "Nares: Moves," which opens Friday and runs through Oct. 6 in the Baker/Rowland Galleries, is an in-depth look at a varied oeuvre and is rich in works – nearly 150 in all – in a wide variety of media, from film and video to works on paper, sculpture, painting, photography and more.

The Most Compelling Art Experiences of the Year

Robb Report

June 6, 2019

Enter respected dealer Paul Kasmin, who trades in the likes of Robert Motherwell, Lee Krasner and Robert Indiana. When it came time to build his latest among a small constellation of galleries, Kasmin turned the roof, which is flush with the High Line, into a 5,000-square-foot sculpture garden, uniting the two Chelseas.

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