This exhibition comprises a selection of large paintings by Helen Frankenthaler from the 1950s through the 1990s, focusing on nature as a longstanding inspiration. Like many abstract artists, Frankenthaler continually tested the constraints of the genre, at times inserting into her compositions elements of recognizable subject matter that throw the abstract elements into relief. The paintings in this exhibition represent the full range of styles and techniques that she explored over five decades of work; while all are primarily abstract, they also contain allusions to landscape, demonstrating how Frankenthaler’s delicate balance between abstraction and a nuanced responsiveness to nature and place developed and shifted over time. As Frankenthaler once commented, “Anything that has beauty and provides order (rather than chaos or shock alone), anything resolved in a picture (as in nature) gives pleasure—a sense of rightness, as in being one with nature.”
Credit: Exhibition overview from museum website.
Whether or not you go, Line into Color, Color into Line: Helen Frankenthaler, Paintings 1962-1987 highlights the diverse relationship between drawing and painting evident in the artist’s work. Showcasing eighteen of Frankenthaler’s paintings, dating from 1962 to 1987, this beautiful book includes color plates of all 18 works, as well as nine double-page spread details. Never-before-published documentary material appears throughout new and insightful texts by John Elderfield, Francine Prose, and Carol Armstrong.