Helen Frankenthaler. Painterly Constellations

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American artist Helen Frankenthaler (1928–2011) is regarded as one of the most important representatives of abstract expressionism of the twentieth century. As part of the New York School in the 1950s, the painter developed her own method of action painting; influenced by Jackson Pollock; her groundbreaking “soak-stain” paintings were created by pouring thinned paint onto untreated canvas. In these abstract works, the medium of paint appears to merge with the ground, creating fluid and atmospheric effects.

Utilizing this technique, Frankenthaler continued to develop her own style that was in turn influential on a movement later known as color field painting. Her paintings are often large-scale and brightly colored, at times featuring dynamic, vigorous brushwork. The artist saw painting on paper as a field of experimentation synonymous with her paintings on canvas.

The show features 74 works on paper alongside a selection of paintings from the individual phases in Frankenthaler’s artistic career. These range in size from monumental to intimate; some reference landscape, while others are resolutely abstract.

Frankenthaler’s work has rarely been shown extensively in German-speaking countries. The exhibition at Kunsthalle Krems is the artist's first monographic show in Austria and is co-organized with the Museum Folkwang in Essen (D), which is dedicating a show to the artist under the same title from December 2, 2022 to March 5, 2023.

The Helen Frankenthaler Foundation in New York is the main lender.

Curator: Florian Steininger

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