Jane Freilicher

About Artist: Jane Freilicher (November 29, 1924 – December 9, 2014) was an American representational painter of urban and country scenes from her homes in lower Manhattan and Water Mill, Long Island. She was a member of the informal New York School beginning in the 1950s, and a muse to several of its poets and writers. Freilicher was at the center of a milieu of important New York painters and poets, including painters Helen Frankenthaler, Joan Mitchell, Grace Hartigan, Fairfield Porter, Larry Rivers, and poets of the New York School including John Ashbery, Kenneth Koch, Frank O’Hara and James Schuyler. Along with Frankenthaler, Hartigan, Mitchell, and Nell Blaine, she was among only a handful of women artists who were exhibiting alongside their male counterparts. In 1996 she was awarded the Annual Academy of the Arts Lifetime Achievement Award from the Guild Hall Museum in East Hampton, New York. Freilicher studied art under Hans Hofmann and in 1947 earned her Bachelor's degree at Brooklyn College. She received her Master's degree in 1948 from Columbia University's. Teacher's College, where the art historian Meyer Schapiro was one of her teachers. As the result of Hofmann's influence she first made abstract expressionist paintings. Then, influenced by artist Pierre Bonnard, she settled into a "softly brushed, meditative lyric" paintings of still lifes and landscapes. She particularly made "urban pastoral" scenes of lower Manhattan and Water Mill scenes which appear to be taken as she looks out her windows. "Usually there is a vase in the foreground, filled with flowers painted in lush, riotous colors, the light behind it..." The Long Island works feature nearby fields and sometimes Mecox Bay. The urban landscapes of lower Manhattan are taken from her penthouse view towards the Hudson River.Freilicher's work was considered by art critic Hilton Kramer to be "pre-eminent among the representational painters of the New York School's second generation."Freilicher has also made woodcut, intaglio and lithograph prints. In 1952 she began showing her works at Tibor de Nagy Gallery, which was also associated with poets. In 2013 an exhibition "Jane Freilicher: Painter Among Poets" of her work was held at Tibor de Nagy in New York City. It reflected the relationships and inspiration that she was for James Schuyler, Frank O’Hara and Kenneth Koch. The exhibition traveled in 2014 to Chicago where it put on display at the Poetry Foundation.

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