For Lewis, a first-generation Abstract Expressionist, working with black seemed to open up his art.
Why a truthful account of artistic development in the United States during the latter half of the 20th century must include the artists shown in this exhibition.
The most interesting part of this excellent exhibition is its presentation of black modernists, for here we enter relatively unfamiliar territory.
Here’s a small taste of what this vast country had to offer in art this year.
PHILADELPHIA — While teaching at Jefferson School of the Social Sciences in New York around 1949, Norman Lewis began to draft an artist’s treatise in which he laid out his teaching theories, and, more intriguingly, his ideas about the role an artist should play in society.
Norman Lewis (1909-1979), in the last two decades of his life, fused black struggle with abstract painting.
Tomorrow, Swann auction house will be presenting a sale, “Atelier 17, Abstract Expressionism & the New York School,” which showcases the prints of the Abstract Expressionist era that are often overlooked because the larger, flashier paintings inevitably grab the spotlight. The sale has a particular emphasis on the co-operative printmaking workshop Atelier 17, which was started in the Paris studio of English painter and draughtsman Stanley William Hayter in 1927. When World War II began, Hayter fled Paris for London and eventually settled in New York after a very short stay in California during the 1940s. The first New York incarnation of Atelier 17 popped up at the New School of Social Research but eventually the studio found a home at 41 East 8th Street in the heart of artistic Greenwich Village. Jackson Pollock lived across the street.