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September 4, 2015


Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: — jherzlinger @ 7:01 am

Ida York Abelman’s work reminds me a lot in many ways of another favorite of mine,  Thomas Hart Benton.  But today’s post is on Ida.  Her life hisotry is one that is so reminiscent of the immigrant

Jews that came to this country.  It is a beautiful history and her work is gorgeous.  I do hope you enjoy this post,




Ida Abelman, was among a wave of socially conscious artists in the 1930′s.  Ida York abelman was the daughter of Russian and Polish immigrants who spoke little English.

As a budding artist, she spent hours at teh metropolitan Museum of Art, often walking there from the family apartment on the Lower East Side when a nickel for the bus fare could not be spared.  One day she took a portfolio of her work to the National Academy of art and was accepted to the  same class as Ilya Bolotowsky and Raphel Soyer.

She was married at the age of 19 to Larry Ableman and led a very carefree existence in  GreenwichVillage. A friend, the art critic Harold Rosenberg, suggested that she apply to the Works Progress Administration,

which President Roosevelt had set up to help artists, and she was put on the payroll of $23 a week!

When the mural program came to an end with the arrival of world war II, the Abelmans moved to Sag Harbor.  The family found life very difficult, as being jewish, were faced with much anti-semitism.  This had left them

rather isolated except from other artists.

August 31, 2015


Filed under: cy twombly sculpture — Tags: — jherzlinger @ 7:28 am

For me, when I think of Cy Twombly, I always think of his paintings.  But he was a fantastic sculptor and I wanted to share his work with you in this post!  The sculpture is as abstract as his paintings.  Abstract expressionism is not always so clearly “acceptable” as the forms are not always as identifiable as say looking at an impressionist painting.

Emerging from the New York art world of the early 1950s, Cy Twombly brought a distinctive approach to painting and sculpture that evaded precise affiliation with the predominant movements of the twentieth century, including Abstract Expressionism, Pop Art, and Minimalism. Inspired by ancient Mediterranean history and geography,

Greek and Roman mythology, and epic poetry, Twombly created—sometimes on a grand scale, in multiple-panel works—a sometimes-inscrutable world of iconography, metaphor, and myth. The breadth of Twombly’s imagination and his interdisciplinary approach to subjects traverse vast distances,

resulting in works that are at once baroque and spare, modern and ancient

Born in Lexington, Virginia in 1928, Edwin Parker Twombly Jr. (known by his father’s nickname, Cy) grew up as a quiet child with artistic inclinations.  As a boy he was a voracious reader, checking out books from the Washington and Lee University library; he also ordered art kits from the Sears & Roebuck catalogue.

At 12 he began to take

private art lessons with the Spanish modern master Pierre Daura, who had moved to the U.S. following the outbreak of World War II.

In 1948 Twombly attended the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, developing an interest in aspects of Dada and Surrealism, especially the art of Kurt Schwitters and Alberto Giacometti.  After a year at Washington and Lee University in Lexington, he moved to New York City to study at the Art Students’ League,

where he first met Robert Rauschenberg.  Encouraged by his fellow artist, Twombly enrolled in Black Mountain College near Ashville, North Carolina, where he studied under Franz Kline, Ben Shahn, and Robert Motherwell (who soon came to consider Twombly “the most accomplished young painter and one of the most ‘natural’ artists of his generation”).

That same year, Twombly had his first solo show in New York, at the Kootz Gallery; some saw in Twombly’s work an affinity with Kline’s black-and-white gestural expressionism and with Paul Klee’s innocent, childlike imagery.

twombly sculptureSeeking to “experience European cultural climates both intellectual and aesthetic,” as he wrote in his grant application, Twombly was awarded a travel fellowship by the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts in 1952, and, with Rauschenberg, set off for North African, Spain and Italy. Twombly would later write of his journeys that the experience was “like finding many wonderful rooms in a house that you never knew existed.” For the rest of the 1950s, Twombly traveled back and forth between New York and Italy, making art; he also served in the U.S. Army as a cryptologist.

Twombly settled in Rome at the end of the decade and began exhibiting his paintings and sculptures throughout Europe, where he achieved the degree of renown accorded his closest contemporaries back in the U.S., Rauschenberg and Jasper Johns.  He has passed this year.
So when you see one of his scribble paintings, also remember his talent for sculpture!




August 26, 2015


Filed under: francesca woodman — Tags: — jherzlinger @ 7:50 am

While in San Francisco, I caught a of fabulous exhibit of FRANCESCA WOODMAN.  The photographs remind me a lot of Man Ray for some reasons and I really loved the etherial quality. I hope you enjoy her work. Some, at once disturbing and difficult to define. Some, I found myself just staring out for a while.

Much Love,


This is the write up from the museum,

“Francesca Woodman (1958-1981) was an artist decisively of her time, yet her photographs retain an undeniable immediacy. Thirty years after her death, they continue to inspire audiences with their dazzling ambiguities and their remarkably rich explorations of self-portraiture

and the body in architectural space. This retrospective, the first in the United States in more than two decades, explores the complex body of work produced by the young artist until her suicide at age 22. Together with Woodman’s artist books and videos, the photographs on view form

a portrait of an artist engaged with major concerns of her era — femininity and female subjectivity, the nature of photography — but devoted to a distinctive, deeply personal vision.


Source: http://www.sfmoma.org/exhib_events/exhibitions/430#ixzz1icBqrRCH

San Francisco Museum of Modern Art

It’s difficult at times to find the proper words to describe certain works. You just want to slip the images right under the viewer’s nose, feeling certain he will understand and share the feeling that, yes, nothing need be said. It’s also demands a great effort to evaluate as photographs, pictures that look like rehearsals,

the act of practicing in preparation for being an angel.

The photographs that Francesca Woodman took between 1975 and 1981 belong to this category. They cause the same kind of confusion that’s so common when we speak about love: the ambiguity only increases with the strength of the feelings involved. In these pictures ambiguity reigns sovereign, fruit of the artist’s respect for her

inner world and her curiosity concerning a fragmentary but strong-felt reality.

The influence of surrealism must also be considered for its interpretations of the female body, which represented a break with traditional models of representation. But even in this case, it would be risky to look for influences which, in the long run, might not hold much water. If surrealism sublimated the chance events, Woodman’s

photographs seem to be a complex of combinations, a space for the transitory, for change, but her work has little or nothing to do with the idea of improvisation.


Woodman was photographer and model, subject and object, at the same time. She utilized the female body to develop her own self-knowledge and not some representative but generic model of the world. The images of the body that this young American was experimenting with suggest a diffuse intimacy while tending to dissuade a

voyeuristic approach. Unlike most of the images we are faced with on a daily basis, where the body is treated like a commodity to be used and consumed, or an icon to adore at safe distance, Francesca Woodman employs her body to initiate a dialog with herself. She places her body in familiar settings, though at the limits of our experience,

presenting it as a symbol of receptivity, a meeting place between herself and the rest of the world, a communicative model in which information about her experience is presented and reflected upon. She uses her own body as a model to investigate her own vision and not another’s vision of her body. Woodman projects images and symbols,

hopes and fears onto the female body. She uses it like a gesticulative vector not fully known to her, communicating to the viewer the novelty of her encounter.


On the one hand, this attitude was motivated by the artist’ s own youth, since these pictures were taken when Woodman was in her late teens and early twenties, in the years before she committed suicide. Art critic Kathryn Hixon wrote in her essay “Essential Magic” (Zurich, 1992): “Woodman’s pictures are not de-constructive, but constructive.

She added layers of reflection and mimicry within the photograph to confound the transparent recording of the real. The images become psychological portraits of the identity of the body, rather than identifying physical portraits that reveal the psyche.” To mention the psychological component is very important in the analysis of Woodman’s oeuvre.

The symbolic reconstruction of reality, without doubt, can be considered as a mechanism in the recognition/awareness of reality itself. It’s as though the artist were researching into the formation of her own personality by exhibiting— sometimes even in the photographs themselves — her impulses, reflections, vulnerability, her awareness of the moment,

and the horror of sudden absence. These are psychological portraits: not the visual records of daily existence but episodes in which the expressive capability of the artist’s imagination is intertwined with the richness and intimacy of her own life. Yes, we know, it takes a great effort to become an angel, and yet her pictures are still fluttering somewhere around our minds.


Francesca Woodman (1958-1981) was an artist decisively of her time, yet her photographs retain an undeniable immediacy. Thirty years after her death, they continue to inspire audiences with their dazzling ambiguities and their remarkably rich explorations of self-portraiture and the body in architectural space. This retrospective, the first in the

United States in more than two decades, explores the complex body of work produced by the young artist until her suicide at age 22. Together with Woodman’s artist books and videos, the photographs on view form a portrait of an artist engaged with major concerns of her era — femininity and female subjectivity, the nature of photography —

but devoted to a distinctive, deeply personal vision.









August 19, 2015


Filed under: serge roche — Tags: — jherzlinger @ 7:26 am

I have been on a kick in blogging about my favorites from the 1940′s, especially recently Maison Jensen.

In keeping with my theme, that I didn’t realize I was on, I am bringing you one of thee all time greats! SERGE ROCHE!

Now, you may not know his name, but I am positive you all know his work.  It has been an inspiration to many current designers and is very much sought after and collected.  

Just a quick note, it is great to have people be inspired by others designs.

I always find it funny when the ignorant insist that something is a copy.  My dears, as is always said, there is nothing new.  So let’s not and never take the time to waste on trying to find origins, but yet lets celebrate the design.

Where this comes from, I got into an argument about Frank Stella vs. Josef Albers.  So, just enjoy! and celebrate talent-now, on to the good stuff!

Roche’s designs definielty rank amongst my favorites.  right around 1930, Roche produced furniture and objets d’art that had a very fluid feminine feel to them.  He used stucco and mirrors to crete the

most outstanding examples of fireplaces and obelisks, and my total favorite-MIRRORS!.  Roche’s ornate white plaster creations, notably floor lamps, mires and sconces epitomize Hollywood Regency and pre-war interior glamour.

Roche was an artist with an eclectic personality, he became very famous not only because of his “objects of mirror” and eery original pieces of furniture, but also because of his capabilities as an art dealer.




August 12, 2015


Filed under: robert therrien — Tags: — jherzlinger @ 7:52 am

I have always been intrigued with installation art, as I have mentioned on many occasions.  So I thought with this blog I would bring to you a world renowned installation artist.  Robert Therrien’s work is above all comical and when you look at installations art, the first thought is that anyone could pull it off.

That’s what they say about boho chic also-  And we all know what bad and missed opportunities look like.

Installation art takes a lot of thought to convey to the viewer without words necessarily what they are viewing.  It is definitely a medium that demands attention and will most certainly evoke an emotion.

Therrien is known as an object maker who transforms elements from everyday life into works of art that evoke mythic archetypes. Working both two- and three-dimensionally, he has created a deceptively simple oeuvre that lends itself to psychological interpretation with its evident fascination with

childhood, its anxieties and fantasies. While his mentors would seem to include a generation of Pop artists, his work also attests to the impact of Conceptualism as well as folk culture, cartoons, and everyday objects.

In 1993, Therrien made a significant breakthrough that influenced all his ensuing work. . The work  – Under the Table (1994), a colossal wooden kitchen table and chair set measuring ten

feet by twenty-six feet — marked a new direction for Therrien. He found that by recreating everyday objects true to their original material and color, but on a greatly enlarged scale, the viewer’s relationship to them changed dramatically. In an  exhibition there were  four gigantic sculptures, each of which

relates to the acts of stacking and folding. No Title (Folding Table and Chairs) comprises four sets of card tables and chairs in authentic ‘institutional’ tones of beige, brown, and green. The monumentality of these objects invites the viewer to walk around and beneath them, altering perspective and

experience to render a formerly familiar situation strange. In No Title (Stacked Plates) andNo Title (Pots and Pans II), Therrien similarly remakes everyday domestic accoutrements in new and uncannily large proportions, then assembles them into precariously balanced towers standing almost eight feet tall.

No Title (Red Room) (2000-2007) took Therrien seven years to realize, gathering and arranging 888 red objects inside a custom-made closet with Dutch doors. His meticulous assembly of objects both found and made–red shoes, red laces, red lanterns, red sweaters, red bricks, red canisters, and so on—prompts

various associations, for example, from the object/group relationship in Matisse’s Red Studio (1911), to the total environment of Cildo Meireles’ Red Shift (1967-1984), or Louise Bourgeois’ The Red Room—Parents (1994) and The Red Room–Child (1994). In Therrien’s work, however, the red items are subsumed

into the background, the seemingly disparate objects becoming a unified, monochromatic whole.

Robert Therrien was born in Chicago in 1947. His work has been exhibited throughout the world since the 1970s, most recently at the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego and the Albright Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo.




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