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Lot Details

These prints come from a portfolio de Kooning made for American poet, Frank O'Hara. With their calligraphic line and poetic movement this series is similar to the artist's pen and inks from the late 1960s.

Willem de Kooning (1904 – 1997) was a leading figure in the Abstract Expressionist movement and is renowned for establishing a distinctly American style of painting. Born in the Netherlands, he immigrated in 1926 to New Jersey, where he supported himself as a house painter for several years. In 1935 de Kooning began to work for Roosevelt’s Works Progress Administration, but was forced to resign in 1937 due to his foreign citizenship; the experience, along with his friendship with painter Arshile Gorky, encouraged him to paint full time. In the 1940s he became associated with the New York Abstract Expressionist movement, as he painted increasingly expressive figurative and abstract works and taught at the progressive Black Mountain College at the height of its artistic influence. In the 1950s, de Kooning exhibited his first 'Woman' series, which shocked audiences with its wildly brushed depictions of menacing women and brought him international fame. In addition to figurative paintings, de Kooning painted many landscapes and abstracted works, and also cast bronze figures. With his wife’s assistance in 1980, de Kooning overcame his hindering alcoholism, allowing him to paint for another ten years in a simpler, more streamlined expressionist style than in his earlier paintings. He died in 1997 in East Hampton, NY.

Selected Public Collections:
Guggenheim, Bilbao, Spain
Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY
National Gallery of Art, Washington D.C.
Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Venice, Italy
Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia
Kunstmuseum Basel, Switzerland
Tate Gallery, London, England
Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, MN

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Provenance:
  • Private Collection, PA
  • Pickup Location: Pennsylvania, USA
  • Shipping Dimensions: 14 x 11 in. (35.56 x 27.94 cm.)
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