HELEN FRANKENTHALER "AERIE" SCREENPRINT, 2009
One of the most remarkable characteristics of Helen Frankenthaler's lengthy and impressive career is how during each decade the artist experiments and evolves.
This later work is one of her finest prints and encapsulates many of the best aesthetic attributes in oeuvre.
Helen Frankenthaler (1928-2011) is typically associated with, and credited for the emergence of Color Field painting. Diaphanous forms that are organic, spontaneous and slightly erotic float across a dense cloud-like background that seem they could dissolve, be absorbed or simply vanish before ones eyes.
The best of Frankenthaler's works are a synthesis of Abstract Expressionism and Color Field painting - there is the automatic gesture plus the practice of directly staining or pouring on the surface.
The artist frequently uses color in almost combative way - juxtaposing hues that avoid being too harmonious or decorative. In "Aerie" while the contrasts between the main color characters are strong (a dense forest green is directly above a looping band of lobster red) the overall composition and palette is pleasing and compatible.
Frankenthaler was an avid printmaker. This work, like many in her oeuvre, is remarkably complex and hand-made. Through utilizing over 90 screens, Frankenthaler was able to achieve the subtle changes in color intensity.
This screen print is based on a painting with the same title, and is an excellent example of her passion for printmaking.
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Screenprint (93 colors)
Initialed and numbered
Hand-stamped by the artist
29.5”H 39”W (work)
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