Editor's note: The Bellevue Art Museum provided source material to Resource Library for the following article or essay. If you have questions or comments regarding the source material, please contact the Bellevue Art Museum directly through either this phone number or web address:



 

Alex Katz: The Complete Woodcuts and Linocuts, 1951-2001

 

Bellevue Art Museum will present an exhibition of wood cuts and linocuts by internationally recognized painter and printmaker Alex Katz titled Alex Katz: The Complete Woodcuts and Linocuts, 1951-2001 opening to the public on June 22, 2002 in the Museum's second floor gallery. This exhibition is devoted to the woodcut and linocut prints created since 1951, a technique that Katz abandoned for a time and picked up again in the mid-1980s. This group of works shows a variety of the stylistic experimentations Katz has explored throughout his career. The exhibition includes forty-two woodcut and thirty-six linocut prints created since 1951.

In the prints of the 1950s, Katz leaves the roughness of the wood creating an expressive texture to the print, which emphasizes a more traditional printmaking method. While the prints of the 1980s to present, Katz tends to create more simplified block prints representative of early collage practices. The artist's use of collage creates images free of any significant visual texture as the images are reduced to a few flat color areas. Katz has also been described as employing German Expressionist techniques, characterized by the harsh angular edges, and black and white tones emphasizing the fact that the images are cut from a solid block, creating work that is often associated with commercial advertisements and early propaganda posters. However, Katz's prints tend to make references to sexy advertising campaigns rather than cutting social commentary. (right: Alex Katz, Big Red Smile, woodcut, 1995, Courtesy of Peter Blum, New York)

Alex Katz has become one of the most important artists to emerge on the American art scene since 1950. Trained as a graphic designer, Katz spent the early years of his life designing posters, book jackets and magazine covers. His remarkable body of large-scale portrait paintings, woodcuts and linocuts, spans more than thirty years. By using close-up vantage points and cropped compositions, and a combination of abstraction and realism, his work engulfs the viewer in an imaginary space located between reality and the artificial.

Alex Katz has exhibited widely throughout the United States and Europe. His works are included in the collections of many museums including the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Hirshhorn Museum and the National Portrait Gallery in Washington. D.C. and the Art Institute of Chicago. Katz works are also to be found in international collections such as The Saatchi Collection in London and the Metropolitan Museum of Art in Tokyo.

An catalog accompanies the exhibition and can be purchased in the Museum Store. The exhibition was organized by the Peter Blum Gallery in New York. Works were lent by the Colby College Museum of Art.

 

Editor's note: RL readers may also enjoy:

and from other websites:

and these VHS videos:

Alex Katz: Five Hours is a 20 minute 1996 video directed by Vivien Bittencourt and Vincent Katz. "We get to see the artist's famous portrait style, as well as the landscape style for which Katz has recently been acclaimed. The videomakers decided against the use of dialogue; the painter is accompanied only by the music of composer and theater artist Merideth Monk. This video captures the essence of Katz, that quality Robert Storr of the Museum of Modern Art defines as the unquantifiable "cool", in a dazzling and moving display of commitment to the experience of painting." (quote from Checkerboard Film Foundation)

 


Alex Katz: 38-minute 1977 Alex Katz. interview from the Video Data Bank, a resource for videotapes by and about contemporary artists.

 

Links to sources of information outside of our web site are provided only as referrals for your further consideration. Please use due diligence in judging the quality of information contained in these and all other web sites. Information from linked sources may be inaccurate or out of date. TFAO neither recommends or endorses these referenced organizations. Although TFAO includes links to other web sites, it takes no responsibility for the content or information contained on those other sites, nor exerts any editorial or other control over them. For more information on evaluating web pages see TFAO's General Resources section in Online Resources for Collectors and Students of Art History. Individual pages in this catalogue will be amended as TFAO adds content, corrects errors and reorganizes sections for improved readability. Refreshing or reloading pages enables readers to view the latest updates.


rev. 2/10/06

Read more articles and essays concerning this institutional source by visiting the sub-index page for the Bellevue Art Museum in Resource Library.


Search for more articles and essays on American art in Resource Library. See America's Distinguished Artists for biographical information on historic artists.

This page was originally published in 2002 in Resource Library Magazine. Please see Resource Library's Overview section for more information.

Copyright 2012 Traditional Fine Arts Organization, Inc., an Arizona nonprofit corporation. All rights reserved.