OOPS! You stumbled into a gallery of American artists' works 'displayed' on this site. Grab a coffee............
Robert Gwathmey, 1903-1988, is the American artist who painted the above for the cover of FORTUNE magazine, August 1949, pictured above. See his other works below.
The Red Hat 1924
Battle of Lights, Coney Island 1913
Brooklyn Bridge 1941
The Little Lake, 1931
Tree of My Life, 1931
The Artist: "The artistic career of Joseph Stella, 1877-1946, was as dynamic, wide-ranging and energetic as his depictions of Coney Island, but categorically, he is remembered as America's first and leading Futurist. Seldom dating his work and moving interchangeably from style to style, Stella is called a 'nightmare for the art historian' by his biographer, John Baur. The highly energetic Stella went back and forth from Realism to Abstraction to Surrealism through media of pencil, collage, wax crayon and oil paint. His disparate subjects were botany, religious allegories, portraiture, street scenes of industrial life and noted buildings and landmarks. However, calling New York City 'his wife,' Stella's favorite depictions were the people and places of that fast moving, bewildering metropolis. The city's noises and confusion nurtured both his creative and social instincts, and friends remember Stella as an elderly man in his favorite sitting position of chin on hands, holding his cane and talking incessantly about human activity around his 14th Street Studio. "Born and educated in southern Italy, 19-year-old Joseph Stella emigrated to New York City where he lived in the Bowery district of the lower east side. He planned to become a medical doctor, but was sidetracked by his art talents, particularly sketching, which led to his enrollment at the New York School of Art. There he was influenced by William Merritt Chase, who introduced Stella to Impressionism and by The Eight, artists who shocked traditionalists by espousing the painting on canvas of realistic scenes from everyday life. Stella spent intermittent periods in Europe where his open, searching mind took him through studies of Old Masters, particularly of the Renaissance, to first-hand observation of the Modernists, including Post-Impressionists and Cubists led by Picasso. In 1911, Stella saw a Paris exhibition of futurists whose painting style expressed modern technological phenomena of motion, speed and light through fractured images, shapes and patterns. Saying years later that "my youth plunged full into it," Stella excitedly pioneered Futurism in America. Between 1912 and 1923, he made several paintings of Coney Island, the riotous amusement park, and created his most famous work, Brooklyn Bridge. And then, in spite of the fact Futurism established Stella's national reputation as an innovative, accomplished artist, he cast it aside, and it became one of his few styles to which he never returned. Ironically or perhaps deliberately, he abandoned the kind of work that made him famous. Ever wary of judgments other than his own, Stella wrote that "the first need of the artist is absolute freedom, freedom from schools, from advisors, from critics and the so-called friends." He believed that artists have only one mission, "to pour out their joy of living."1 References: 1. Lonnie Pierson, "Joseph Stella," in Cityscapes, Curriculum Guide/Teacher Packet (Lincoln, NE: NETCHE, 1989), 17-20.
Birds On A Flowering Branch, 1919
The artist on left...1920
The Banyan Tree
White Factory, 1928
Peter Blume, 1906-1992. As a part of the gallery's collection, White Factory illustrates the kind of adjustment to Cubism made by American artists in the second and third decades of the century. With but one or two exceptions, American painters chose to utilize Cubist ideas simply as a new way of seeing traditional subject matter. The subject remains the most important part of the picture and there is little or no involvement in the space-time speculations that invest the paintings of Picasso and Braque with their revolutionary challenge. The relationships that are normal to landscape painting are maintained with only a tentative manipulation of space to test the inventive power of the painter. Daring as it must have been in 1928, this painting remains only the first stage in the radical developments to come in the work of this artist. The adjustment to Cubism is usually identified as Precisionism; in stylistic terms it amounts to little more than a simplification of forms in the direction of their nearest volumetric equivalent, the cube, the cone, and the sphere. The movement finds its best-known representatives in Charles Sheeler, Charles Demuth, Niles Spencer, and Georgia O'Keeffe. Numerous other painters, whose later careers did not keep them in the focus of public attention, were also involved in this Americanization process. Among them were Stefan Hirsch, Francis Criss, Miklos Suba, and Elsie Driggs. In the case of Peter Blume, his initial preoccupation with a Cubist organization of picture space gave way to the more complicated concerns of surrealist and eventually symbolical and allegorical art as exemplified in his famous South of Scranton1 of 1931 and The Eternal City2 of 1937. The White Factory is the prelude to these works.
1. Collection of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York.
2. Collection of The Museum of Modern Art, New York.
The Sharecropper and Blackberry Pickers
1949 Cover Fortune Robert Gwathmey Power Lines Farmer August Red Green Cows Herd - Original Cover
Although he worked in Long Island during most of his adult life, Robert Gwathmey, 1903-1988, was born and raised in Richmond, Virginia, and attended North Carolina State University before taking his art training at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts. A long-time teacher at the Cooper Union in New York. Gwathmey is noted for his use of precise contours that outline graphic shapes in vivid colors and his symbols of broad social commentary. It was not until his return to the South after years of art schooling in New York that he began to empathize with the African-American experience. He commented, "As a youth I was conscious of harsh inequalities in my community . . . When I got back home, I was shocked by the poverty. The most shocking thing was the Negroes, the oppressed segment. If I had never gone back home, perhaps I would never have painted the Negro."
Frank Stella, Raqqa II, 1970
Your Lips Are Blue
Frank Stella (American, born 1936)
Raqqa II, 1970
Synthetic polymer and graphite on canvas, 120 x 300 in. (304.8 x 762 cm)
Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Gordon Hanes, 82.16
© 2004 Estate of Frank Stella / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York
To many artists of Frank Stella's generation, the highly subjective paintings of the abstract expressionists seemed mannered and self-indulgent. Stella's response was to systematize the abstract picture using geometry and a strict but arbitrary set of procedures. Explaining that his art "is based on the fact that only what can be seen there is there,"* he sought to distill the image to paint and canvas alone. He stripped his paintings of story or statement — even a brushstroke conveyed too much personality. Stella methodically developed images in series, first mapping the designs on paper before transferring them to canvas. Little was left to chance.
Raqqa II belongs to Stella's aptly titled Protractor Series, begun in 1967. Though never completed, the series was to include 31 compositions, each to be carried out in three different formats: interlaces, rainbows and fans. He titled the paintings after ancient circular-planned cities. Raqqa II does not lie quietly on the wall. It dominates its surroundings. What at first glance appears as a childlike pattern is actually a highly complex exercise in perception. Bright bands of flat color arc and overlap, promising an illusion of receding space. However, their containment within a strict system of seven shaped and framed units confounds that illusion. The monumental scale and aggressive confidence of Raqqa IItypify American art during the 1960s.
* Lucy R. Lippard, ed., "Questions to Stella and Judd (Interview by Bruce Glaser)," Art News(Sept. 1966): 5.
For a dramatic large picture view of Raqqa II, apparently taken at the North Carolina Museum of Art, where it resides....see if this link still works
NCMA’s Frank Stella piece Raqqa Two is an expansive painting that sits on the main floor of the North Carolina Museum of Art. The 1970 painting falls toward the end of the Protractor Series- the late sixties paintings where Stella experimented with canvas shape by using complex wooden and aluminum frames. The imagery and shape of the painting is inspired by Stella’s experience in circular Mideastern cities, this particular piece being named after the Syrian city Al-Raqqa.
He was born in Malden, Massachusetts. After attending high school at Phillips Academy in Andover, Massachusetts, he went on to Princeton University, where he met Darby Bannard and Michael Fried; his work was influenced by the abstract expressionism of Jackson Pollock and Franz Kline, and majored in history. Early visits to New York art galleries influenced his artistic development. Stella moved to New York in 1958 after his graduation. He is one of the most well-regarded postwar American painters who still works today. Frank Stella has reinvented himself in consecutive bodies of work over the course of his five-decade career.
Robert Bradford - Making Harbor
John Kensett - Coastal Scene 1869