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MILTON AVERY (1885-1965)

 
MILTON AVERY - (Untitled) Woman in Blue - oil on canvas - 36 1/4 x 28 in. MILTON AVERY - (Untitled) Woman in Blue - oil on canvas - 36 1/4 x 28 in. MILTON AVERY - (Untitled) Woman in Blue - oil on canvas - 36 1/4 x 28 in. MILTON AVERY - (Untitled) Woman in Blue - oil on canvas - 36 1/4 x 28 in. MILTON AVERY - (Untitled) Woman in Blue - oil on canvas - 36 1/4 x 28 in. MILTON AVERY - (Untitled) Woman in Blue - oil on canvas - 36 1/4 x 28 in. MILTON AVERY - (Untitled) Woman in Blue - oil on canvas - 36 1/4 x 28 in. MILTON AVERY - (Untitled) Woman in Blue - oil on canvas - 36 1/4 x 28 in. MILTON AVERY - (Untitled) Woman in Blue - oil on canvas - 36 1/4 x 28 in. MILTON AVERY - (Untitled) Woman in Blue - oil on canvas - 36 1/4 x 28 in.
(Untitled) Woman in Bluec. 193936 1/4 x 28 in.(92.08 x 71.12 cm) oil on canvas
Provenance
Private Collection
Sale, Christie's, New York, May 23, 1990, lot 230
Private Collection, Florida
 
Exhibition
New York, Grace Borgenicht Gallery, Milton Avery: Retrospective and Recent Paintings, December 1952
Literature
Dore Ashton, "Fifty-Seventh Street in Review: Milton Avery,” Art Digest, New York, December 1952, n.p.
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“I try to construct a picture in which shapes, spaces, colors, form a set of unique relationships independent of subject matter.” – Milton Avery

History

Born in 1885, the arc of Milton Avery’s career was synced to the single most important exhibition held in America — the Armory show of 1913. The event acted upon American complacency with shocking force. It also laid the groundwork for an artistic revolution from which an artist such as Avery could emerge. Avery has often been characterized as America’s Matisse, but he is more appropriately viewed as a maverick who understood his inner nature and had a definite vision as well as a preternatural determination from which he never wavered. A quintessential American artist, his independent spirit manifested in his art and on his own terms: big shapes, no emphasis on light and shade or heavy modeling, flattened, simplified interlocking forms and non-associated colors and color relationships.

In the years before a group of younger artists followed him with rapt attention, Avery was on his own. As if to illustrate the point, his wife Sally humorously recalled that, “he began sketching me a lot and he did this big figure — a seated figure. And the man who loaned Milton his studio…came in and he said, “Milton! You’re getting lazy. You haven’t finished this picture!” And Milton said, “But I have finished it.” That’s his, you know, I mean, “from my point of view it’s finished.” (Interview with Sally Michel Avery, November 3, 1967, Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution)

More
  • Avery39075_history1
    Milton Avery, 1950, photograph by Consuelo Kanaga
  • Avery39075_history2
    Milton Avery, 1944, photograph by Arnold Newman
  • Avery39075_history3
    Milton Avery, “Sally Avery with Still Life”, 1926, Smithsonian American Art Museum
  • Avery39075_history4
    Milton Avery, “Nude After Bath”, 1933, oil on canvasboard
  • Avery39075_history5
    Installation view, Henri Matisse, Museum of Modern Art, first monographic exhibition, 1931
  • Avery39075_histroy6
    Milton Avery, “Seated Woman”, 1953, oil on canvas
“Why talk when you can paint?” – Milton Avery

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