Lee Krasner

OCTOBER 11, 2019 – JANUARY 12, 2020

The artist Lee Krasner (1908–1984) is a pioneer of Abstract Expressionism in the United States. For the first time in more than 50 years, her work will be on view in a major European retrospective. The Schirn is presenting paintings, collages, and drawings as well as films and photographs, and will tell the story of one of the most remarkable artists of the twentieth century. The exhibition presents works from across Krasner’s entire oeuvre, which spans more than half a century: self-portraits from the late 1920s, charcoal life drawings, groups of works such as her renowned Little Images from the 1940s and her Prophecy series from the 1950s, along with works from her Umber and Primary series from the 1960s and late collages from the 1970s.

Lee Krasner, Springs, NY, 1972 © The Irving Penn Foundation, Photo: Irving Penn

The Schirn Kunsthalle Frankfurt dedicates a major retrospective to the pioneer of abstract expressionism Lee Krasner

Lee Krasner Shattered Color, 1947, 53,3 × 66 cm, Private Collection. © Pollock-Krasner Foundation/VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2019. © 2017 Christie’s Images Limited.

Driven by a great sense of purpose, Krasner took art lessons even during her time in high school, went on to study at the Cooper Union, the National Academy of Design and the Hans Hofmann School of Fine Arts. She was an active member of the association American Abstract Artists and cultivated friendships with Ray Eames, Arshile Gorky and Willem de Kooning. In New York in the 1940s, she was part of the epicenter of the movement that would become known as Abstract Expressionism or New York School together with artists such as Stuart Davis, Mark Rothko, Barnett Newman, and Jackson Pollock. After the Second World War, this young generation of artists sought a new pictorial language through different artistic approaches. Unlike other artists of the time who also painted in a non-representational manner, Krasner never developed a “signature style,” but instead aspired to constantly reinvent her pictorial language.

The exhibition is curated and organised by Barbican Centre, London in collaboration with Schirn Kunsthalle Frankfurt, Zentrum Paul Klee, Bern and the Guggenheim, Bilbao.

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Press Information on the Exhibition "Lee Krasner"

12.07.2019 | The artist Lee Krasner (1908–1984) is a pioneer of Abstract Expressionism in the United States. After more than 50 years, her work will once again be on view in Europe in a major retrospective. The Schirn Kunsthalle Frankfurt is presenting nearly 100 works, including paintings, collages, and drawings as well as films and photographs, and will tell the story of one of the most single-minded artists of the twentieth century.

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Lee Krasner, Self-Portrait, c. 1928, 76,5 × 63,8 cm, The Jewish Museum, New York. © Pollock-Krasner Foundation/VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2019. Courtesy the Jewish Museum, New York.

Lee Krasner, Shattered Color, 1947, 53,3 × 66 cm, Guild Hall Museum, East Hampton, Long Island.© VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2018 & The Pollock-Krasner Foundation. Photo credit: Gary Mamay.

Lee Krasner, Bird Talk, 1955, 147,3 × 142,2 cm, Private Collection.© Pollock-Krasner Foundation/VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2019.

Lee Krasner, Burning Candles, 1955, 147,6 × 99,1 cm, Collection Neuberger Museum of Art, Purchase College, State University of New York, gift of Roy R.Neuberger. © Pollock-Krasner Foundation/VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2019. © Jim Frank

Lee Krasner, Prophecy, 1956, 147,6 × 86,4 cm, Private Collection. © Pollock-Krasner Foundation/VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2019. Courtesy Kasmin Gallery, New York. Photograph by Christopher Stach

Lee Krasner, Polar Stampede, 1960, 243,8 × 412,4 cm, The Doris and Donald Fisher Collection at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. © Pollock-Krasner Foundation/VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2019, Courtesy Kasmin Gallery, New York.

Lee Krasner, Combat, 1965, 179 × 410,4 cm, National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, Felton Bequest, 1992 (IC1-1992). © VG Bild-Kunst Bonn, 2018 & The Pollock-Krasner Foundation/ ARS, New York. Licensed by Copyright Agency, 2018.

Lee Krasner, Portrait in Green, 1969, 140,3 × 239,8 cm, Collection Pollock-Krasner Foundation. © VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2018 & The Pollock-Krasner Foundation, courtesy Kasmin Gallery, New York. Photo: Diego Flores.

Lee Krasner, Palingenesis, 1971, 208,3 × 340,4 cm, Collection Pollock-Krasner Foundation. © Pollock-Krasner Foundation/VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2019. Courtesy Kasmin Gallery, New York.

Lee Krasner, Imperative, 1976, 127 × 127 cm, National Gallery of Art, Washington D.C. © Pollock-Krasner Foundation/VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2019. Courtesy National Gallery of Art, Washington D.C.

Lee Krasner, ca. 1938, Photographer unknown

Lee Krasner, Springs, NY, 1972 © The Irving Penn Foundation, Photo: Irving Penn