Barnett Newman

Drawings 1944-1946

April 18 – May 23, 2008

Press Release

NEW YORK – A special exhibition of Barnett Newman drawings will go on view at Craig F. Starr Gallery on April 18th. Comprised of loans from the Barnett and Annalee Newman Foundation and private collections, Barnett Newman Drawings 1944-1946 will provide a rare opportunity to view the artist's earliest surviving artistic explorations.

Between 1944 and 1946, Newman (1905-1970) made a dozen or so drawings of organic and "biomorphic" forms. The eight drawings on view are the best examples of this period. The bright crayon drawings feature brilliant red, orange, and violet tones comprising bird and plant-like figures in a loosely defined landscape, while others embody an earthy palette and feature calligraphic scribbles across the paper in undefined space.

Drawing was an invaluable discipline for Newman, who resisted certainty and prediction. These images exemplify Newman's desire to begin anew; these are the beginnings of his efforts to create an alternate artistic vocabular to geometric abstraction and surrealism.

Barnett Newman Drawings 1944-1946 will be accompanied by an illustrated catalogue, featuring an essay by James Lawrence and color images of selected works in the exhibition.