Lee's lyrical abstraction, 2019,
Acrylic on canvas, 14 x 11" (36 x 28 cm)
Jackson's mural, 2019,
Acrylic on canvas, 14" x 11" (36 x 28 cm)
In the late 30s, Lee Krasner was very involved in the NY art scene. While studying with Hans Hofmann, her style changed from Surrealist to abstract figural and still-life compositions. These early works demonstrate that she painted as an abstract expressionist, before meeting Pollock, when she used to be presented as influenced by him. Krasner did not always agree with Hofmann and his remarks such as: “This [study] is so good you would not know that it was done by a woman. Krasner reported that Piet Mondrian had told her: 'You have a very strong inner rhythm. You must never lose it'.
In July 1943, Peggy Guggenheim commissioned Jackson Pollock to create an 8-by-20-foot painting: Mural for her new townhouse, at the suggestion of her friend and advisor Marcel Duchamp. The legend is that the artist painted it in one night after weeks of hesitation but recent research have now proven that the artwork was finished in November and done in several stages.
His comments are based on the following quotes “Every good painter paints what he is », « It doesn't make much difference how the paint is put on as long as something has been said. Technique is just a means of arriving at a statement », « a reviewer wrote that my pictures didn't have any beginning or any end. He didn't mean it as a compliment, but it was ».
His wife Lee Krasner will be key in his success by promoting his work and connecting him with for example art critic Clement Greenberg. The post is dated on November 12, 1943 when Peggy Guggenheim wrote a letter were she states that she’s very happy with the mural.
Sources: "Conservation as a Connoisseurship Tool: Jackson Pollock's 1943 Mural for Peggy Guggenheim, A Case Study"
Jackson Pollock’s Mural for Peggy Guggenheim, Francis O’Connor.
Lee Krasner: A Biography By Gail Levin