Color as Field: American Painting, 1950–1975

With 41 large-scale canvases, Color as Field presents a remarkable opportunity for viewers to fully comprehend the aims of color field artists, such as Helen Frankenthaler, Morris Louis, Kenneth Noland, Jules Olitski, Larry Poons, and Frank Stella, view their finest works, and experience the beauty and visual magnetism of their pictorial handling of space and color.

 

Color field painting, which emerged in the U.S. in the 1950s, is characterized by pouring, staining, or spraying thinned paint onto raw canvas, creating vast chromatic expanses. Exemplified in the work of Helen Frankenthaler, Morris Louis, Kenneth Noland, Jules Olitski, Larry Poons, and Frank Stella, these paintings constitute one of the crowning achievements of postwar American abstract art. Color as Field is the first major exhibition or book to examine the color field artists as a group—its sources, meaning, and impact.

Curated by Karen Wilkin, Color as Field encompasses approximately 41 large-scale canvases and presents a remarkable opportunity for viewers to fully comprehend the aims of these artists, view their finest works in close relation to each other, and experience the beauty and visual magnetism of their pictorial handling of space and color.

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ITINERARY

Denver Art Museum, Denver, CO
November 9, 2007–February 3, 2008
Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington, D.C.
February 29–May 26, 2008
Frist Center for the Visual Arts, Nashville, TN
June 20 –September 21, 2008

Publication

Color as Field: American Painting, 1950–1975

Authors: Karen Wilkin, Carl Berz, Hrag Vartanian
Publishers: American Federation of Arts, Yale University Press (2007)
Dimensions: 9 x 12 in.
Format: Softcover, 128 pp
ISBN: 978-1-885444-36-3

More Info

Curator

Karen Wilkin is a New York-based independent curator and art critic specializing in 20th-century modernism.

Credit

The exhibition is organized by the American Federation of Arts and made possible, in part, by grants from the Henry Luce Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts as part of American Masterpieces: Three Centuries of Artistic Genius.