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Seattle Art Museum (SAM)

Wall Landscape

Wall Landscape


Willem de Kooning

American, (born The Netherlands), 1904-1997

In the late 1950s, Willem de Kooning traveled frequently between his studio in New York and a studio on Long Island, where his regular contact with landscape transformed his painting. The composition of Wall Landscape was laid down with a few broad gestures made in a scale inordinately large in relation to the canvas size. De Kooning often made and remade a painting, layering and scraping its surface; here he relinquished that intricacy, instead relying on a more immediate process, governed by a few grand intersecting brushstrokes confidently executed in a deliberately pared down palette.

Oil on canvas
61 1/2 x 49 in. (156.2 x 124.4 cm)
Gift of the Virginia and Bagley Wright Collection
Provenance: Sidney Janis Gallery, New York City; Virginia and Bagley Wright, Seattle, Washington, 1960; Fractional Interest Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Bagley Wright of Seattle to Seattle Art Museum, Seattle, Washington, 1977
Not currently on view


Exhibition HistorySeattle, Washington, Seattle Art Museum, "International Abstraction: Making Painting Real", May 2, 2003 - February 29, 2004, (5/2/2003-2/29/2004)
Washington, D.C., The Washington Gallery of Modern Art, "20th Century Paintings from Washington State Collections", September 1966
Portland, Oregon, Portland Art Museum, "Collection of Mr. & Mrs. C. Bagley Wright: Twentieth Century American and European Paintings and Sculpture", November 8-December 8, 1964 (11/8/64-12/8/64)

Seattle, Washington, Seattle Art Museum, "Modern in America", July 8, 2004 - February 27, 2005 (7/8/2004 - 2/27/2005)

Seattle, Washington, Seattle Art Museum, "Willem de Kooning in Seattle: Selected Works from 1945 to 1985 in Public and Private Collections," November 2, 1995 - March 3, 1996

Washington, D.C., Washington Gallery of Modern Art, Twentieth Century Painting from Collections in the State of Washington, (dates not recorded),1966 (Seattle, Washington, Seattle Art Museum Pavilion, December 8, 1966-January 8, 1967).

Published ReferencesAuping, Michael, et. al. Abstract Expressionism: The Critical Developments. Exh. cat., Albright-Knox Gallery. Buffalo and New York, 1987.

Carmean, E.A., Jr., Eliza E. Rathbone with Thomas B. Hess. American Art at the Mid-Century: The Subjects of the Artist. Exh. cat., National Gallery of Art, Washington, 1978.

Cowart, Jack and Sanford Sivitz Shaman. De Kooning, 1969-1978. Exh. cat., University of Northern Iowa, Gallery of Art. Cedar Falls, 1978.

An Exhibition by de Kooning Introducing His Sculpture and New Paintings. Exh. cat., Sidney Janis Gallery. New York, 1972.

Hess, Thomas B. De Kooning: January 1968-March 1969. Exh. cat., M. Knoedler & Co., Inc. New York, 1969.

_____. De Kooning: Recent Paintings. Exh. cat., M. Knoedler & Co., Inc. New York, 1967.

_____. Recent Paintings by Willem de Kooning. Exh. cat., Sidney Janis Gallery. New York, 1962.

_____. Willem de Kooning. Exh. cat., Museum of Modern Art. New York, 1968.

_____. Willem de Kooning. Exh. cat., Stedelijk Museum. Amsterdam, 1968.

Larson, Philip and Peter Schjeldahl. De Kooning: Drawings/Sculpture. Exh. cat., Waler Art Center. Minneapolis and New York, 1974.

The North Atlantic Light. Essay by Carter Ratcliff. Exh. cat., Stedelijk Museum. Amsterdam, 1983.

Recent Oils by Willem de Kooning. Essay by Kenneth B. Sawyer. Exh. cat., Martha Jackson Gallery. New York, 1955.

The Sculpture of de Kooning with Related Paintings, Drawings and Lithographs. Foreword by David Sylvester. Essay by Andrew Forge. Exh. cat., Scottish Arts Council and Arts Council of Great Britain. Edinburgh and London, 1977.

Stoulling, Claire, et. al. Willem de Kooning. Exh. cat., Musée National d'Art Moderne, Centre Georges Pompidou. Paris, 1984.

Waldman, Diane. Willem de Kooning in East Hampton. Exh. cat., Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum. New York, 1978.

Willem de Kooning. Essay by Dore Ashton. Exh. cat., Smith College Museum of Art. Northampton, 1965.

Willem de Kooning: Drawings, Paintings, Sculpture. Essays by Paul Cummings, Jörn Merkert, and Claire Stoulling. Exh. cat., Whitney Museum of American Art. New York, 1983.

Willem de Kooning: 1935-1953. Essay by Clement Greenberg. Exh. cat., School of the Museum of Fine Arts. Boston, 1953.

Willem de Kooning: Pittsburgh International Series. Exh. cat., Museum of Art, Carnegie Institute. Pittsburgh, 1979.

Willem de Kooning: Recent Paintings 1983-1986. Essay by Robert Rosenblum. Exh. cat., Anthony d'Offay Gallery. London, 1986.

Willem de Kooning: Transcending Landscape, Paintings, 1975-1979. Essay by Jill Weinberg Adams. Exh. cat., C & M Arts. New York, 1993.

Wolfe, Judith. Willem de Kooning: Works from 1951-1981. Exh. cat., Guild Hall Museum. East Hampton, NY, 1981.

Zilczer, Judith. Willem de Kooning from the Hirshhorn Museum Collection. Essays by Zilczer and Lynne Cooke. Exh. cat., Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden. Washington and New York, 1993.

Alloway, Lawrence. "Iconography Wreckers and Maenad Hunters." Art International 5 (April 1961), 32-47.

_____. "Sign and Surface: Notes on Black and White Painting in New York." Quadrum no. 9 (1960), 49-62.

Arb, Renée [R.A.]. "Spotlight on de Kooning." Artnews 47 (April 1948), 33.

Ashton, Dore. "Art." Arts and Architecture 72 (December 1955), 10, 33-34.

_____. "Art." Arts and Architecture 73 (June 1956), 10.

_____. "Art." Arts and Architecture 74 (June 1957), 8-10.

_____. "Art." Arts and Architecture 76 (July 1959), 5, 30-31.

_____. "New York Commentary: De Kooning at Knoedler." Studio International 175 (January 1968), 39-41.

_____. "New York Commentary: De Kooning at the Museum of Modern Art and Knoedler." Studio International. 177 (May 1969), 243-245.

_____. "Willem de Kooning: Homo Faber." Arts Magazine 50 (January 1976), 58-61.

Berkson, Bill and Rackstraw Downes, eds. Art Journal 48 (Fall 1989). Special issue devoted to de Kooning with statements from acquaintances, close friends, and other artists.

"Big City Dames." Time, 6 April 1953, 80.

Brett, Guy. "The Tate's de Kooning Exhibition." Times (London), 6 December, 1968.

Burton, Scott. "Generations of Light." Artnews Annual 35 (1969), 21-33.

Coates, Robert M. "The Art Galleries." New Yorker, 4 April 1953, 94-96.

"Congenial Company." Art Digest 16 (15 January 1942), 18.

Crehan, Hubert. "Woman Trouble." Art Digest, 7. (15 April 1953), 5.

De Kooning, Elaine. "De Kooning Memories." Vogue, December 1983, 352-353, 393-394.

"De Kooning's Year." Newsweek, 10 March 1969, 91.

Denby, Edwin. "My Friend de Kooning." Artnews Annual 29 (1964), 82-99, 156.

Devree, Howard. "De Kooning." New York Times, 22 March 1953, sec. 2, p. 8.

Duncan, Carol. "The MoMA's Hot Mamas." Art Journal 48 (Summer 1989), 171-178.

Farber, Jules B. "Willem de Kooning: A Brief 'Homecoming.'" International Herald Tribune, 27 May 1983.

Farber, Manny. "Art." The Nation, 11 November 1950, 445.

Finkelstein, Louis. "The Light of de Kooning." Artnews 66 (November 1967), 28-31, 70-71.

_____. "Marin and de Kooning." Magazine of Art. 43 (October 1950), 202-206.

Fitzsimmons, James. "Art." Arts and Architecture 70 (May 1953), 4, 6-10.

Forge, Andrew. "De Kooning in Retrospect." Artnews 68 (March 1969), 44-47, 61-64.

_____. "De Koonings 'Women.'" Studio International 176 (December 1968), 246-251.

Geist, Sydney. "Work in Progress." Art Digest 27 (1 April 1953), 15.

Goldwater, Robert. "Masters of the New." Partisan Review 29 (Summer 1962), 416-420.

_____. "Reflections on the New York School." Quadrum, no. 8 (1960), 17-36.

Greenberg, Clement. "Art." The Nation, 24 April 1948, 448.

_____. "Art." The Nation, 11 December 1948, 675-676.

Hess, Thomas B. "Art: Stella Means Star." New York Magazine, 1 November 1976, 62-63.

_____. "De Kooning Paints a Picture." Artnews 52 (March 1953), 30-33, 64.

_____. "De Kooning's New Women." Artnews 64 (March 1965) 36-38, 63-65.

_____. "8 Excellent, 20 Good, 133 Others." Artnews 64 (March 1965) 34-35, 57-58.

_____. "In de Kooning's Studio." Vogue, April 1978, 236-239.

_____. "Pinup and Icon." In Woman as Sex Object: Studies in Erotic Art, 1730-1970 [Artnews Annual 38], edited by Thomas B. Hess and Linda Nochlin, 222-237. New York, 1972.

_____. "Reviews and Previews." Artnews 58 (May 1959), 12-13.

_____. "Selecting from the Flow of Spring Shows." Artnews 55 (April 1956), 24-25, 100.

_____. "U.S. Painting: Some Recent Directions." Artnews Annual 25 (1956), 76-98, 174-180, 192-199.

_____. "The Whitney: Exhibit Abstract." Artnews 47 (December 1948), 24-25, 59, 62.

Hudson, Andrew. "A 'Freshness of Eye' Wafted in From the West Coast," in The Washington Post, 1966 (date unknown)

Hunter, Sam. "By Groups and Singly." New York Times, 25 April 1948, sec. 2, p.11.

Kuh, Katherine. "The Story of a Picture-or What's a Museum For?" In The Open Eye: In Pursuit of Art, 182-222. New York 1971.

Kuspit, Donald. "The Unveiling of Venus: De Kooning's Melodrama of Vulgarity." Vanguard 13 (September 1984), 19-23.

Lippard, Lucy. "Three Generations of Women: De Kooning's First Retrospective." Art International 9 (November 1965), 29-31.

Louchheim, Aline B. "Conclusion from a Chicago Annual." New York Times, 28 October 1951, sec. 2, p. 9.

Marriott, Celia. "Iconography of de Kooning's Excavation." Bulletin of the Art Institute of Chicago 69 (January 1975), 14-18.

McBride, Henry. "It's Called Expressionism." Artnews 51 (May 1952), 26-28, 63.

Perrault, John. "De Kooning at the Springs." New York Magazine, 17 March 1969, 44-47.

Peters, Din. "Willem de Kooning Paintings, 1960-1982." Studio International 196 (August 1983), 4-5.

"Collection of Mr. and Mrs. C. Bagley Wright: Twentieth Century American and European Paintings and Sculpture," Portland, OR: Portland Art Museum, Nov. 8-Dec. 6, 1964, no. 30.

Porter, Fairfield. "Art." The Nation, 6 June 1959, 520-521.

_____. "Willem de Kooning" Artnews 54 (November 1955), 48-49.

Raymont, Henry. "De Kooning Back in Netherlands." New York Times, 20 September 1968, p. 95.

Seattle Art Museum respectfully acknowledges that we are on Indigenous land, the traditional territories of the Coast Salish people. We honor our ongoing connection to these communities past, present, and future.

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