American Artist Kenneth Noland Dies Age 85




Kenneth Noland  1924-2010

Studied at Black Mountain College, North Carolina, 1946-48, and with Ossip Zadkins in Paris, 1948-49. Taught at the Institute of Contemporary Art, Washington, D.C., 1949-51, at the Catholic University, Washington, D.C., 1951-60, and at the Washington Workshop Center of the Arts, 1952-56. Served as Milton Avery Professor of the Arts, Bard College, Annandale-on-Hudson, New York, 1985. Died 5 january 2010.

Kenneth Noland Born was born in 1924 in Asheville, North Carolina and is widely associated with the late 1950’s movement know as Color Field painting or ‘Post Painterly Abstraction’ the name coined by critic Clement Greenberg. The style utilized a flattening of texture and used pure pigment soaked into the canvas to create bold abstractions.

In 1948 and 1949 Noland worked with Ossip Zadkine in Paris, and had his first exhibition of his paintings there. In the early 1950s he met Morris Louis in Washington DC. He became friends with Louis, and after being introduced by Clement Greenberg to Helen Frankenthaler and seeing her new paintings at her studio in New York City in 1953 he and Louis adopted her “soak-stain” technique of allowing thinned paint to soak into unprimed canvases.Most of Noland’s paintings fall into one of four groups: circles, or targets (see Beginning illustrated), chevrons, (see infobox), stripes, and shaped canvases. His preoccupation with the relationship of the image to the containing edge of the picture led him to a series of studies of concentric rings, or bull’s-eyes, or as they were known – Targets – like the one reproduced here called Beginning from 1958, using unlikely color combinations. This also led him away from Morris Louis in 1958. Noland pioneered the shaped canvas, initially with a series of symmetrical and asymmetrical diamonds or chevrons. In these paintings, the edges of the canvas become as structurally important as the center. During the 1970s and 1980s his shaped canvases were highly irregular and asymmetrical. These resulted in increasingly complex structures of highly sophisticated and controlled color and surface integrity. ArtLyst


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