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Announcing the recipients of the Frankenthaler Prints Initiative, 2018

This month, the Foundation will launch the Frankenthaler Prints Initiative for university museums, comprising gifts of selected prints by the artist to ten museums. Each will receive ten prints and five to ten related trial proofs, drawn from the Foundation’s extensive collection of prints by the artist. The gifts—spanning etching, lithography, monotype or monoprint, pochoir, screenprint, woodcut, and other techniques, sometimes in combination—will reflect the variety of media Frankenthaler used.

Each museum will also receive a one-time grant of USD 25,000 to develop a project or program for the study, presentation, and interpretation of the works within a three-year timeframe.

Ruth Fine, former Curator of Special Projects in Modern Art at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., and a leading authority on Frankenthaler’s prints, has selected the prints and is working with the Foundation as an advisor on the multi-year initiative.

The museums have been selected for their dedicated commitment to prints as a significant collecting area and teaching tool, while having few or no examples of Frankenthaler’s prints in their collections. These are:

Blanton Museum of Art at The University of Texas at Austin
Bowdoin College Museum of Art
University of South Florida Contemporary Art Museum
Grunwald Center for the Graphic Arts/Hammer Museum, UCLA
The Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University
Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts
Princeton University Art Museum
RISD Museum, Rhode Island School of Design
SCAD Museum of Art, Savannah College of Art and Design
Spencer Museum of Art, University of Kansas, Lawrence

The second group of museums for the prints initiative will be announced in 2019.

Helen Frankenthaler (1928–2011), whose career spanned six decades, has long been recognized as one of the great American artists of the twentieth century, widely credited for her pivotal role in the transition from Abstract Expressionism to Color Field painting. She produced a body of work whose impact on contemporary art has been profound and continues to grow. Her work is represented in the collections of major museums worldwide and has been the subject of numerous national and international exhibitions and substantial publications.

The Helen Frankenthaler Foundation was established and endowed by the artist during her lifetime and became active in 2013, on the closing of the artist’s estate. The Foundation supports the artist’s legacy through a variety of initiatives, including encouraging and facilitating significant exhibitions of Frankenthaler’s work, grant-making, and the publishing of a catalogue raisonne. Its holdings include an extensive selection of Frankenthaler’s work in a variety of mediums, her collection of works by other artists, and original papers and materials pertaining to her life and work.


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