Esphyr Slobodkina and American Abstraction

Recently I wrote about the changing taste for American modernism, and the impact these changes had on the career and legacy of the painter Ilya Bolotowsky. As I was researching Bolotowsky, I learned about his involvement in the group American

On Changing Artistic Tastes and American Modernism, Part 2: Grandma Moses

Last week, I wrote about the shifting American taste in modern art at the middle of the twentieth century. I’d like to revisit that subject again this week, prompted by my research on one of the most famous—and, in her

On Changing Artistic Tastes and American Modernism

Recently, while conducting research on the painter Elizabeth Murray (herself worthy of a future blog post), I came across an interesting anecdote. In 1994 Kirk Varnedoe, the Museum of Modern Art’s Chief Curator of Painting, asked Murray to curate an

Reginald Marsh, Depression-era New York, and Old Masters

In this blog series, I have tended to focus closely on American art. This is, of course, mostly by design: I am a specialist in art of the United States, and the project I’m working on is all about CFAM’s

Martin Lewis and Urban America

I was inspired to write this post after enjoying a recent CFAM Work of the Week: Derricks at Night by the American printmaker Martin Lewis. In her introduction of the print Curator Gisela Carbonell relates Lewis’s relationship with the work

Richard Lindner’s Funhouse New York

A few weeks ago, I wrote about the painter Wolf Kahn’s dramatic escape from Germany on the eve of World War II. This week, I came across a similar story, this one from Kahn’s slightly older colleague Richard Lindner. Lindner,

Seascape, Ship Portraiture, and the Drama of Detail in Marine Painting

This week I have been considering Black Squall at Gibraltar, a recent addition to the collection. Its maker, James E. Buttersworth, is one of those artists, like Arthur Fitzwilliam Tait, who was prolific and comfortably successful in his own time,

Ernest Lawson and the Materiality of Paint

I have long wanted to discuss the related disciplines of art conservation and technical art history on this blog but hadn’t found the right angle until now. In part, that’s because I haven’t been able to travel to look at

More Thoughts on American Art After Abstract Expressionism: Nancy Graves

In the last entry of this blog, I wrote about the American painter Wolf Kahn, whom the art historian Barbara Novak regarded as perfectly blending the American landscape tradition with the formal innovations of Abstract Expressionism.1 In this post I