Norman Rockwell Museum Looks at Jackson Pollock and the Rise of Abstract Expressionism

Rockwell Painting conneseur

Norman Rockwell painting Conneseur.
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Stockbridge, MA, July 22, 2016—In conjunction with its newest exhibitionRockwell and Realism in an Abstract World, Norman Rockwell Museum will present talks on the abstract expressionist movement during the week of July 24. 

On Monday, July 25, starting at 5:30 p.m., the Museum will examine the work of Jackson Pollock and the rise of the abstract expressionism with Helen A. Harrison, Director of the Pollock-Krasner House ad Study Center. Ms. Harrison will discuss the revolutionary post-World War II art movement, which placed America on the international stage as an influential force to be reckoned with in the art world. She will look at the artists and critics who sparked new ways of seeing. 

The following Thursday, July 28, at 5:30 p.m., Stephanie Haboush Plunkett, the Museum’s chief curator, will offer a walking tour of the Rockwell and Realism in an Abstract World exhibition, tracing the shifts in twentieth century art and the art of illustration. 

Both talks are free for Museum members, or included with regular Museum admission.

Rockwell and Realism in an Abstract World

On view through October 30, 2016

In post-World War II America, the primacy of abstract art was clearly acknowledged, and by 1961, when Rockwell painted The Connoisseur, Abstract Expressionism had been covered in the popular press for nearly 15 years. Originated in the 1940s by Pollock, Willem de Kooning, Franz Kline, Barnett Newman, and Mark Rothko, among others, Abstract Expressionism was the first American movement to achieve widespread international influence.

For the first time, Norman Rockwell Museum will explore the contrast between the abstract and realist movements, placing works by Rockwell, Wyeth, and Warhol side by side with Pollock, Calder, Johns, and over 40 other preeminent artists. Rockwell and Realism in an Abstract World examines the forces that forged the mid-century dismissal of narrative painting and illustration, as well as the resurgence of realist painting during the latter half of the twentieth century, its presence and critical consideration today, and the ways in which our contemporary viewpoints have been shaped by post World War II constructs.

The exhibition features the art of prominent illustrators, painters, and sculptors whose autographic art spans more than 60 years, representing many dynamic forms of visual communication.  Featured artists include: Marshall Arisman, Bo Bartlett, Austin Briggs, Alexander Calder, Alan E. Cober, Robert Cottingham, Robert Cunningham, Joe De Mers, Walton Ford, Eric Forstmann, Helen Frankenthaler, Bernie Fuchs, Sam Francis, Edwin Georgi, George Giusti, Ralph Goings, Cleve Grey, Brad Holland, Dan Howe, Jasper Johns, Jeff Koons, Anita Kunz, Jacqui Morgan, Robert Motherwell, Barbara Nessim, Barnett Newman, Tim O’Brien, Claes Oldenburg and Coosje Van Bruggen, Al Parker, Bob Peak, Philip Pearlstein, Jackson Pollock, Robert Rauschenberg, Larry Rivers, Norman Rockwell, Peter Rockwell, James Rosenquist, David Salle, Saul Steinberg, Cy Twombly, Andy Warhol, Robert Weaver, Thomas Woodruff, Andrew Wyeth, and Jamie Wyeth. The exhibition is sponsored by TD Bank.