Helen Frankenthaler.

I am in love with the work of Helen Frankenthaler.  After pouring over countless images of her beautiful art, I read up a bit on life  to find out more about how she came to be one of America’s most significant postwar abstract expressionists.

Helen Frankenthaler is recognized as one of the most influential abstract artists of the 20th century.  Born in New York city in 1928,  she was the youngest daughter of  Alfred Frankenthaler, a New York State Supreme Court judge, and Martha Lowenstein, a German immigrant.  Helen was interested in color from a very early age and studied at the Dalton School where she worked with Mexican abstract painter, Rufino Tamayo.  She went on to graduate from Bennington College in 1949 and  joined the new Tibor de Nagy gallery with her first solo show in 1951.   In 1952,  her exhibition of   “Mountains and Sea”, solidified her place as a postwar expressionist and introduced her color field technique.   A method in which thinned oil paint is applied to an unprepared canvas.  She married Robert Motherwell in 1958,   Motherwell was a central  figure in the abstract movement and further  ushered Frankenthaler into the art world.      Helen went on to greatly influence a new generation of countless  abstract artists and exhibited her work for 6 decades  until her death in 2011.

 Mountains and Sea, 1952.  Oil and charcoal on canvas, 7′ 2 3/4″ by 9′ 8 1/8″. Via.

I am so inspired by the shapes and brilliant colors in Frankenthaler’s paintings.  Image via.










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