Lee Krasner is the first full-scale retrospective of the major American painter Lee Krasner (1908 - 1984) since her death. Krasner was the only female associated with the first generation of the New York School. This exhibition articulates her critical contributions to the movement and brings an important feminist perspective to the discussion of Abstract Expressionism. Krasner's work demonstrates an ongoing artistic dialogue with a diverse range of artists, including Hans Hoffman, Willem de Kooning, Henri Matisse, Piet Mondrian, and her husband, Jackson Pollock. Krasner was influenced by Pollock's work but she was a powerful influence on his work as well.
The traveling exhibition comprises sixty paintings, collages, and drawings on loan from major collections around the world. Together, these works-many of them not publicly exhibited in decades-present the complete trajectory of Krasner's work. Organized chronologically, the exhibition begins with the artist's early figurative work of the 1930s and includes important examples from all phases of her career, including the magisterial series "Eleven Ways to Use the Words to See."
Organized by Independent Curators International and curated by noted art historian Robert Hobbs, this revealing exhibition demonstrates Krasner's lifelong refusal to settle on a single style with which to express her artistic and personal concerns. It also examines her position as one of the most important American painters of this century. Dr. Hobbs states, "Lee Krasner's art diverges from mainstream Abstract Expressionism. It represents an unrelenting search for a dynamic self that continually outdistances her work. Predicated on this open-ended sense of herself, Krasner's art is particularly relevant at the end of the millennium, when old definitions of a cohesive and unchanging self are being seriously questioned."
With fierce determination and an ever-questioning eye, Lee Krasner helped define-and redefine-the art of this century. Over the course of five decades, Krasner defied convention and created an identity distinct from her role as Jackson Pollock's wife. From figurative painting to Abstract Expressionism and beyond, that journey is now captured in Lee Krasner, a full-scale retrospective of her work.
This exhibition was organized by Independent Curators International (ICI), New York, and was curated by Robert Hobbs. The exhibition and the accompanying publication are made possible by a leadership contribution from the principal sponsor, The Robert Lehman Foundation, Inc.
Philip Morris Companies Inc. is the corporate sponsor of the national tour and has also provided additional support to the Akron Art Museum for its presentation of the exhibition.
In addition to Philip Morris, support has been provided through generous grants from The Pollock-Krasner Foundation, The Eugene V. and Clare E. Thaw Charitable Trust, the Ida and William Rosenthal Foundation, Inc., and Betsy Wittenborn Miller and Robert Miller, and the National Endowment for the Arts.
The presentation in Akron is also made possible by a generous gift from the Mary S. and Louis S. Myers Foundation.