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Untitled

© Al Held Foundation, Inc. / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York, New York. Photo by Peter Paul Geoffrion.

Untitled

Artist: Al Held (Born in Brooklyn, New York, 1928 – 2005)
Date: c. 1957
Medium: Oil on canvas
Dimensions:
45 × 44 in. (114.3 × 111.8 cm)
Classification: Painting
Credit Line: Gift of Dr. and Mrs. Ronald R. Fagin
Label Text:Al Held was an influential artist and educator who helped codify abstract painting in the 1960s. Held served in the Navy during World War II, after which he studied in Europe and became part of an expatriate circle of American artists in Paris. He returned to the U.S. in 1953 when Abstract Expressionism was at its height. A movement characterized by energetic brushwork absent of recognizable imagery, “action painting,” as Abstract Expressionism was also known, conveyed an existential anxiety prevalent after the war. Untitled is one of Held’s earliest mature paintings that illustrates his adoption of gestural brushwork. Following his Abstract Expressionist period, Held’s work evolved into more reductive, geometric forms.
Object number: 2016.6.1
UA-478739-2