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Adolph Gottlieb, Sign #2, 1973, acrylic on commercially prepared linen, 8' 7-7/8" x 5' 11-1/2" (263.8 cm x 181.6 cm) © Estate of Adolph and Esther Gottlieb / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Adolph Gottlieb

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b. 1903, New York
d. 1974, New York

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The Adolph & Esther Gottlieb Foundation
@gottliebfoundation

Adolph Gottlieb worked his passage to Europe when he was seventeen, after studying briefly at The Art Students League.

He spent six months in Paris visiting the Louvre every day and auditing classes at the Academie de la Grande Chaumiere. Gottlieb made his solo debut in 1930. In 1935, he became a founding member of “The Ten,” a group of artists devoted to expressionist and abstract painting. Eight years later, he would become a founding member of another group of abstract painters, “The New York Artist Painters,” that included Mark Rothko, John Graham, and George L. K. Morris. In 1943, Gottlieb co-authored and published a letter with Rothko in The New York Times, expressing what is now considered to be the first formal statement of the concerns of the Abstract Expressionist artists.

Gottlieb continued to develop his Pictographs through the 1940s. By 1949 he had further refined and simplified his imagery to focus on basic sets of polarities within the image. He continued to refine and re-state that concept for the balance of his career, creating images referred to as “Imaginary Landscapes” and “Bursts”, among others. Gottlieb’s art was acquired by major museums beginning in 1946. His art was the subject of a retrospective exhibition organized by Clement Greenberg in 1952, another at The Jewish Museum in New York in 1956, a survey exhibition at The Walker Art Center in 1963, and a joint retrospective exhibition at the Whitney and Guggenheim Museums in 1968. During his lifetime he was the subject of 55 solo and over 400 group exhibitions. In 1954 he created a 1200 sq ft (112 sq meters) stained glass façade in New York City. In 1963 he was the first American to be awarded the Grande Prêmio of the Bienal de São Paolo. In addition to creating art, Gottlieb was a prominent spokesperson and advocate for artists of his generation.

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Adolph Gottlieb, The Red, 1972, oil on linen, 90" x 60" (228.6 cm x 152.4 cm) © Estate of Adolph and Esther Gottlieb / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

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Adolph Gottlieb, Open Above, 1972, acrylic on canvas, 7' 6-1/8" x 9' 1/8" (228.9 cm x 274.6 cm) © Estate of Adolph and Esther Gottlieb / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

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Adolph Gottlieb, Green Dream, 1967, acrylic on paper, 24" × 19" (61 cm × 48.3 cm) 31-1/2" × 26-1/4" × 1-1/2" (80 cm × 66.7 cm × 3.8 cm), frame © Estate of Adolph and Esther Gottlieb / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

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Adolph Gottlieb, Untitled, 1966, acrylic on paper, 18-7/8" x 24-1/8" (47.9 cm x 61.3 cm) © Estate of Adolph and Esther Gottlieb / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York