Fairfield Porter (American, 1975)

Fairfield Porter (American, 1907–1975) is recognized as one of America’s most influential 20th century painters. Though better known for his art, Porter was also an accomplished art critic. By creating representational and Realist works during the dominance of Abstract Expressionism, Porter is credited for keeping Realism alive. In 1924, he attended Harvard University, where he focused on philosophy. After college, Porter studied under the painter Thomas Hart Benton (American, 1889–1975) at the Art Students League of New York. The city harbored his interest in radical politics, and Porter's work grew more socially relevant. In 1949, he moved with his wife, Anne Channing, to a seaside town in Long Island, which was the inspiration for many of his landscape paintings. By 1951, he had become the associate editor of Art News and had his first New York exhibition at the Tibor de Nagy Gallery. Porter's close friend Willem de Kooning (American/Dutch, 1904–1997) had recommended Porter's distinctive work to the gallery, who agreed to exhibit it upon de Koonings word. Shortly after, the gallery began representing Porter, providing him with annual exhibitions and shows at the Whitney Museum of American Art. His nature-influenced works continue to be celebrated for highlighting the extraordinary in common, daily life.


Born in Winnetka, IL
Studied Philosophy and Art at Harvard, Cambridge, MA
Studied at the Art Students League, New York, NY
First lithographed illustration for The Possessed by Dostoyevsky, Italy
Married poet Anne Channing, New York, NY
Died in Southampton, NY


Fairfield Porter: Raw—The Creative Process of an American Master, Parrish Art Museum, Southampton, NY (solo)
Fairfield Porter (1907-1975), Michael Rosenfeld Gallery, New York, NY (solo)
Fairfield Porter : Drawings and Poetry, Michael Rosenfeld Gallery, New York, NY (solo)
On Paper: The Figure in Twentieth Century American Art, Michael Rosenfeld Gallery, New York, NY
Drawings By, Proctor Art Center, Bard College, Annadale, NY
Still Life, Rahr-West Art Museum, Manitowoc, WI
Compass Rose Gallery, Inaugural Exhibition, Chicago, IL (solo)
The Late Watercolors, Katonah Gallery, Katonah, NY (solo)
Art Museum of Florida International University, Miami, FL
Objects Observed, Summit Art Center, Summit, NJ
Drawings and Drawings, Hudson River Museum, Yonkers, NY
The Realist Landscape, Robeson Center Gallery, Newark, NJ
Hirschl & Adler Modern, New York, NY (solo)
Whitney Museum of American Art, Fairfield County, CT (solo)
Paintings and Works on Pater', Arts Club of Chicago, Chicago, IL (solo)
Art and Friendship: A Tribute to Fairfield Porter, Guild Hall Museum, East Hampton, NY
Retrospective, organized by Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, MA (solo)
Haus Olen Kunst, Munich, Germany
Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, Philadelphia, PA
The Contemporary American Landscape, Hirschl & Adler Galleries, New York, NY
Mickelson Gallery, Washington, DC (solo)
Artist's Choice Museum, New York, NY (solo)
Hull Gallery, Washington, DC (solo)
Gross-McCleaf Gallery, Philadelphia, PA (solo)


Arthur, John. Spirit of Place. Boston: Bullfinch Press, 1989.
Downes, Rackstraw. Art in Its Own Terms: Selected Criticism, 1935-1975. Boston: MFA Publications/artWorks, 1979.