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  • Literature

    Lanier Graham 24

  • Artist Biography

    Willem de Kooning

    American • 1904 - 1997

    Born in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, Willem de Kooning moved to the United States in his early 20s, arriving in Manhattan by 1927. A founding member of the Abstract Expressionist movement in New York, de Kooning was a contemporary of Jackson Pollock, Franz Kline, and of course his wife, Elaine de Kooning. Having claimed that “flesh is the reason why oil painting was invented,” de Kooning is best known for his rapid, forceful brushwork and thickly impastoed paint in evoking the human body, even as some of his contemporaries moved towards pure abstraction. Like the other New York School painters, de Kooning was a proponent of “Action Painting,” which emphasized the physical aspect of the work, eschewing the idea that painting was necessarily a careful, precise art form.

    By the 1960s, the artist was living and working in East Hampton, where he managed to breathe new life into his work after decades in an urban environment and remained there until his death in 1997 at the age of 92. De Kooning’s works reside in leading institutions worldwide, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, Museum of Modern Art, New York, Hirshhorn Museum & Sculpture Garden, Washington, D.C., Tate, London, and Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam.

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Figure at Gerard Beach

Lithograph, on Japanese paper, with full margins,
I. 31 1/2 x 23 1/2 in. (80 x 59.7 cm);
S. 35 x 25 3/8 in. (88.9 x 64.5 cm)

signed and inscribed 'to Gertrude X mas love Bill' in black crayon, the edition was 32 and 14 artist's proofs on Italia paper, published by Knoedler, New York, minor surface soiling, occasional soft handling creases, otherwise in very good condition, unframed.

$4,000 - 6,000 

Sold for $5,625


8 June 2011 New York