Barnett Newman (American, 1905–1970) was a painter and art critic, born in New York to Jewish immigrant parents from Poland. In his late teens, Newman began taking classes at the Art Students League, where he befriended fellow artist Adolph Gottlieb. Additionally, Newman studied philosophy at the City College of New York, and upon graduating, worked with his father at their family’s clothing manufacturing business to earn money and support his life as an artist. After the company faltered in the early 1930s due to the stock market crash, Newman became a substitute art teacher. In 1936, he married Annalee Greenhouse, and by 1940 had given up his substitute position and was teaching silk-screen printing and batik on a part-time basis to adult students. It wasn’t until the mid-1940s that Newman’s career as a professional artist truly began: Considered one of the most prominent artists of the Abstract Expressionist movement, Newman was a leading painter working in the color field style. His paintings are often large in scale and characterized by flat, vivid colors, and one or more vertical lines. In 1943, Newman arranged an exhibition with friends Adolph Gottlieb, Mark Rothko, and Milton Avery in protest against the selection jury for a particular exhibition at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. During the 1940s, Newman continued to draw, paint, and write art criticism. In 1945, he completed his first known work on canvas. 1949 was his most productive year, during which he completed 17 paintings. Newman’s first solo exhibitions during the early 1950s were generally not well received by critics and art collectors; however, by the late 1950s, major museums began purchasing Newman’s work as he garnered a larger audience and greater appreciation. One of Newman’s best-known workss is The Stations of the Cross (1958–1966), a series of 14 abstract paintings in black-and-white. The subtitle of the series, “Lema Sabachthani,” translated as “God, Why have you forsaken me,” is a clear reference to the subject of Newman’s work. Today, Barnett Newman’s works are included in many prestigious public collections around the world, including those in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Tate Gallery in London, and the Kunstmuseum Basel in Switzerland.