Louise Nevelson

Beloosesky Gallery is interested in purchasing artworks created by Louise Nevelson. 

Please call (917) 749-4577 or email us at info@beloosesky.com

 

 

Creator of wood assemblages made from found objects and parts of furniture doused in black paint, Louise Nevelson became the darling of the New York art world, especially during the last three decades of her life when her success was assured.  She cultivated an artistic image, was thin and draped clothes haphazardly on her figure, smoked small cigars, and wore exceedingly long, fake eyelashes.

She was born Louise Berliawsky in Kiev, Russia, and at age five, moved with her family to Rockland, Maine where her father ran a lumber yard.  In a town that was mostly Protestant, middle class, white people, she felt out of place as a Jew and an immigrant.  In 1920, she moved to New York, studied at the Art Students League with Kenneth Hayes Miller, and married Charles Nevelson, whose "WASP" family she regarded as terribly stuffy.  They had a son, and when he was nine years old, she went to Munich to study, separating from her husband and leaving her son for several years with her parents. 

In Germany, she studied with Hans Hoffman until the Nazis drove him away, and then she studied in Paris before returning to America to raise her son and pursue her art career.  From 1932 to 1933, she was in Mexico as an assistant to muralist Diego Rivera.  In 1941, she had her first one-woman show, which was held at the Nierendorf Gallery in New York, but her break through did not come until 1957, when she began her box-like assemblages and received much critical acclaim. 

In 1959, Louise Nevelson was one of "Sixteen Americans" in an important Museum of Modern Art exhibition.  In the mid 1960s, she began welding found objects to welded steel, and directed a team of workers to make her black painted sculptures. For her, the color black symbolized harmony and continuity.

She also held several teaching positions including at the Educational Alliance in New York City; the Adult Education Program in Great Neck, New York; and at the New York School for the Deaf.

Nevelson lived to age eighty nine, and was much pleased that her son, Mike, also became a successful sculptor.  In 1976, she wrote her autobiography, Dawns and Dusks, in which she credited her own determination for her success.  In recognition of that success, the U.S. government in 2000 issued special Louise Nevelson commemorative stamps, with five varieties, each with a photo of one of her monochrome sculptures.


Sources include:
Charlotte Streifer Rubinstein, American Women Artists
Marika Herskovic, American Abstract Expressionism of the 1950s

 

Biography from the Archives of AskART

 

 

Timeline

 

1899

Born in Kiev, Ukraine

 

1905

Moved Rockland, USA

 

1929–1930

Studied visual and performing arts, including dramatics at the Art Students League

 

1931

Attended Hans Hofmann’s school in Munich, Germany

 

1932

Returned to New York and assisted Diego Rivera on murals for the WPA Federal Art Project

 

1937

Joined the WPA as a teacher for the Educational Alliance School of Art

 

1947

Studied etching with Stanley William Hayter at his Atelier 17 in New York

 

1949–1950

Worked in marble and terra-cotta and executed her totemic Game Figures

 

1957–1959

Became a president of the Artist’s Equity New York chapter

 

1959

Received a grand Prize for work in the Art USA exhibition at the New York Coliseum

 

1966

Became vice-president of the International Association of Artists

Received Honorary Degree from Western College for Women in Oxford, USA

 

1969

Received a MacDowell Colony Medal in Peterborough, USA

 

1973

Received a honorary degree from Smith College in Northampton, USA and Columbia University in New York, USA

 

1985

Received a National Medal of Arts from President Ronald Reagan

 

1988

Died in New York, USA

 

2000

Was the subject of a set of Louise Nevelson commemorative stamps issued by the U.S Postal Service

 

 

Exhibitions

 

2013

Midnight Party, Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, USA

Louise Nevelson: Black, Davis Museum at Wellesley College, Wellesley, USA

 

2012

Louise Nevelson, Locks Gallery, Philadelphia, USA

Selections From The Estate: 1954-1987, Timothy Yarger Fine Art, Beverly Hills, USA

 

2011

Louise Nevelson, Alan Avery Art Company, Atlanta, USA

Rediscoveries 1, Colby College Museum of Art, Waterville, USA

Louise Nevelson: Collages, Pace Prints, New York, USA

Louise Nevelson 1899 – 1988, The Architect of Shadow, Artiscope, Brussels, Belgium

 

2010

Louise Nevelson, Galerie Thomas, Munich, Germany (solo)

Advancing Abstraction in Modern Sculpture, Baltimore Museum of Art, Baltimore, USA

Louise Nevelson, Farnsworth Art Museum, Rockland, USA

 

2009

Louise Nevelson: Dawns and Dusks, Louise Blouin Foundation, London, England (solo)

Louise Nevelson: Dawns and Dusks, Pace Gallery, New York, USA

Louise Nevelson: Collages, Galleria Il Ponte, Florence, Italy (solo)

The Pull of Experiment: Postwar American Printmaking, Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven, USA

 

2008

Jesuvian Process, Elizabeth Dee Gallery, New York, USA

Doppio Songo Dell' Arte (Art's Double Dream), Indianapolis Museum of Contemporary Art, Indianapolis, USA

 

2007

De-Natured: Works from the Anderson Collection, San Jose Museum of Art, San Jose, USA

Light Time and Three Dimensions, Pace Gallery, New York, USA

The Sculpture of Louise Nevelson, The Jewish Museum, New York, USA; travelled to de Young Museum, San Francisco, USA (solo)

 

2006

Louise Nevelson: Small Works, Locks Gallery, Philadelphia, USA (solo)

Louise Nevelson: The Architecture of the Light, Nohra Haime Gallery, New York, USA (solo)

 

2005

Louise Nevelson: Ceramics and Sculpture, Greenfield Sacks Gallery, Santa Monica, USA (solo)

Collecting for the Cause: Activist Art in the 1960s and '70s, Smart Museum of Art, Chicago, USA

Continuum: 130th Anniversary of the Art Students League of New York, ACA Galleries, New York, USA

 

2004

Picasso to Pop: A Growing Contemporary Collection, Phoenix Art Museum, Phoenix, USA

Louise Nevelson, Hackett Freedman Gallery, San Francisco, USA (solo)

 

2003

Louise Nevelson: Selections from the Farnsworth Art Museum, Heckscher Museum of Art, Huntington, USA

Going Modern at the Allen: American Painting and Sculpture 1950-1980, The Allen Memorial Art Museum, Oberlin, USA

Imagine: Selections from the permanent collection, Museum of Contemporary Art, North Miami, USA

 

2002

True Grit: Seven Female Visionaries Before Feminism, Boise Art Museum, Boise, USA

Louise Nevelson: Structures Evolving, Samuel P. Harn Museum of Art, Gainesville, USA

 

2001

Louise Nevelson, Galerie Marwan Hoss, Paris, France (solo)

Points of Departure II: Connecting with Contemporary Art, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, San Francisco, USA

 

1999

Drawings, Greenfield Sacks Gallery, Santa Monica, USA

Louise Nevelson, Sculpture and Collages, Baldwin Gallery, Aspen, USA

 

1998

Louise Nevelson: Sculpture and Drawings from the 1940s, Washburn Gallery, New York, USA (solo)

The 60s in the Seventies, Ubu Gallery, New York, USA

1997

Richard Gray Gallery, Chicago, USA (solo)

Assemblage: More Than Meets The Eye, Choate House Gallery, Pace University, Pleasantville, USA

 

1994

Louise Nevelson, Palazzo delle Esposizioni, Rome, Italy (solo)

The Box: From Duchamp to Horn, Ubu Gallery, New York, USA

 

1991

10 Sculptors of the New York School, Manny Silverman Gallery, Los Angeles, USA

 

1986

Louise Nevelson, Michel Soskine Inc., New York, USA (solo)

 

1983

Nuclear Weapons Freeze Benefit Exhibition, Margo Leavin Gallery, Los Angeles, USA

 

1967

Louise Nevelson,The Rose Art Museum, Waltham, USA (solo)

Sculpture: A Generation of Innovation, The Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, USA

 

 

Public Collections

 

The Aldrich Museum of Contemporary Art, Ridgefield,CT

The Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, IL

The Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn, NY

The Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.

Dallas Museum of Art, Dallas, TX

Farnsworth Art Museum, Rockland, ME

Hara Museum of Contemporary Art, Tokyo, Japan

The Jewish Museum, New York, NY

The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, NY

Musée de Peinture et de Sculpture, Grenoble, France

Museum Boymans-van Beuningen, Rotterdam, Netherlands

Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, IL

The Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY

Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, NY

Tate Gallery, London, U.K

Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven,CT

Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY