| The Spring||1950||Kenneth Adams|
||Overall: 16 1/8 x 11 13/16 in. (41 x 30 cm)
mat: 20 x 16 1/8 in. (50.8 x 41 cm)|
| The White Church||1938-1940||Beatrice Mandelman|
(1912 - 1998)
Born on December 31, 1912 in Newark, New Jersey, from an early age Beatrice Mandelman was determined to be an artist. At age 12, she began taking classes at the Newark School of Fine and Industrial Art. In the 1930s, she attended Rutgers University, the Newark School of Fine and Industrial Art and the Art Students League in New York City.
||12 × 18 in. (30.5 × 45.7 cm)|
| Theatre of Shadows (from Recuerdos)||2000 (printed 2001)||William Davis|
||13 3/8" H x 17 3/4" W|
| Three Rocks, City of Rocks, NM||1989||
||Overall: 14 3/4 in. x 18 1/2 in.|
| Tranquility (No. 1)||c. 1964||Barbara Harmon||
||Overall: 13 3/8 x 24 in. (34 x 61 cm)|
| Tres Tecolotes||1988||
||piece: 22 × 25 1/2 in. (55.9 × 64.8 cm)
image (mat): 17 × 20 1/2 in. (43.2 × 52.1 cm)
image (support): 26 × 30 in. (66 × 76.2 cm)|
| Untitled||c. 1930||Joseph Imhof|
(1871 - 1955)
Joseph Imhoff was born in Brooklyn, New York in 1871. His first exposure to art was at age six when his godfather gifted him with a box of watercolors. Upon graduation, his father refused him further education unless he became a priest. Rejecting his father's wishes, he started teaching himself lithography and was hired by Currier & Ives. He eventually earned enough money from this job to buy a bookstore. In 1991 he eventually quit his job and sold the bookstore to pursue a formal art education in Europe. Traveling and painting for four years in Paris, Brussels, Antwerp and Munich he apprenticed with several artists.
But perhaps the most important experience he had in Europe was to meet Buffalo Bill Cody on board the ship and join him in Antwerp to spend time sketching and painting various members of the "Wild West Show". This experience set in place a style of painting for the rest of his life which focused on ethnographic and anthropological data rather than artistic expression. He documented the religious ceremonies of Pueblo Indians in large, rather simplified oils. He also learned new techniques for lithography which had a long-term influence on his artwork.
When he returned to New York, he rented a studio in Flatbush and began to study the Iroquois Indians in New York and Canada. He spent the next ten years painting and improving his lithography, photography and color printing innovations - which financed his early painting career. He also freelanced for Allen and Ginter, painting his Indian Head Series for insertion on cards in boxes of cigarettes.
In 1897 Joseph married Sarah Ann Elizabeth Russell, and they traveled to Europe several times until 1905 when they visited the Southwest for the first time to record the ceremonies of the Pueblo Indians. Joseph and built a studio in Albuquerque in 1906, and spent much time in the next few years traveling around the region.
In 1929 Joseph and Sarah moved to Taos permanently and built their new home facing the sacred mountain behind the Taos Pueblo. Their neighbor for some twenty years, Mabel Dodge Lujan, was known to refer to him as, "The Grand Old Man of the Pueblos". He would ask native models to live in his home for a time before he painted them. He felt he needed to know the person's soul that the eyes revealed in order to paint an accurate likeness. He collected many Indian artifacts and also had the first lithography press in Taos, which he used to make ethnographic prints and teach his techniques of recording the region's history. His series of paintings called Kivas and Corn which he gifted to the University of New Mexico was his most famous work. The Koshare Indian Museum also houses one of the largest collections of his paintings.
Joseph Imhof died in 1955 leaving an important legacy of the American Southwest. His wife Sarah in later years said of her husband, "...a gentle, dignified man who loathed the publicity and the limelight that other artists seemed to seek; he avoided publicity at all times..."
||Overall: 16 9/16 x 11 13/16 in. (42 x 30 cm)|
| Untitled||c. 1960||Louis Ribak||
||Overall: 14 1/8 x 10 3/16 in. (35.9 x 25.8 cm)
frame: 20 3/4 x 15 3/4 in. (52.7 x 40 cm)|
| Untitled||1980||Ronald Davis||
||Overall: 22 7/16 x 15 3/16 in. (57 x 38.5 cm)|
| Untitled||1952||Edward Corbett|
EDWARD CORBETT (1919-1971), moved to Taos in 1951.
I intend my work as poetry. 56
—Edward Corbett, 1952
Edward Corbett believed, with the rest of the abstract expressionists, that the value of art is intrinsic. He reflected on his own intentions as a painter and an intellectual at grips with ideas that dominated his world at the time:
I knew that I had to find a way of painting that I could do as well as [the Europeans] did their Surrealism and Cubism … and I had to literally work towards a discovery. I didn’t know what I was working towards. It was a mystery. The end was there but it was imagined. The end. I could imagine without knowing what it looked like in the painting … 57
By the time he was included in the Museum of Modern Art’s 1952 “15 Americans” exhibit, Corbett had found the imaginative track he would continue to follow. The process began with his childhood in the Southwest and continued through his time as a student, and later a teacher, at the California School of Fine Arts, San Francisco. 58 He made his first visit to Taos as early as 1947 and relocated there
in 1951. 59
Corbett completed only four or five paintings during his 20 years in Taos; the balance of his works were drawings in charcoal, chalk, pastel, pencil, and occasionally, casein. He started painting by placing colors on the canvas and then gradually eliminating or lessening them by covering them with white. 60 The canvases are filled with almost imperceptible detail. These paintings provided the structural and thematic basis for his later work.
According to Corbett, “Abstract appearances are seen, the matter is felt, the experience is emotionalized, and through continual experience the symbol is formed.” 61 Abstract appearances—suggested by the land and by architectural forms that grow out of nature—led him to a symbology of the land, not landscape pictures. Corbett, however, was equivocal about the natural environment as a catalyst for art. He wrote, “I admit to being influenced by not only nature out-of-doors, but nature within,” and concluded, “If sources of nature exist, I trust they do not influence the painting.” 62 Perhaps this denial of the influence of natural forms served as a defense measure: fully abstract work could have lost some of its magic if described with words such as “this is a cliff.”
Whatever they were based on, Corbett’s images suggest the fullness of night, heavy snow, deep canyons, stark light; subtle hues fill paper and canvas with considerable life force, the understated vigor of immensely rugged land overflowing with delicacies of color and movement and light flashes. In his Taos drawings, the interplay of negative and positive creates depth; their soft-edged forms interlock in a lyric poetry of form. His work, often in grays and browns, shows that the successful use of hue is a matter of making combinations and relationships rather than the degree of pigment saturation. Corbett’s exacting drawings create the tension of anticipation, “not the experience of possessing an event, but a mystery … about what might happen.” 63 [cite source]
Edited excerpt from David Witt, Taos Moderns (1992)
||Overall: 18 1/8 x 11 15/16 in. (46 x 30.4 cm)|