Agnes Martin: The Early Years 1947-1957

On view in the Raymond Jonson Gallery September 13 – December 14, 2013
With an opening reception, Thursday, September 12, 6 – 8 pm preceded by a members’ preview at 5 pm.*

Widely recognized as one of the preeminent artists of the late 20th century, Agnes Martin is best known for her subtly rendered grids and stripes painted from the early 1960s until the end of her career in 2004. But as a graduate student at UNM in the late 1940s, under the mentorship of Raymond Jonson, and the 1950s in Taos and New York, Martin worked in a far more spontaneous, organic, and aggressive style that is completely different from the absolute control and serenity of her later works. Martin tried to destroy most of these early works but, luckily, many of them survive and they tell us much about a young and very talented artist navigating her way through the maze of early to mid-twentieth-century American modernism.

Agnes Martin: The Early Years 1947-1957 was curated by Jina Brenneman, Curator of Collections and Exhibitions, Harwood Museum of Art, Taos, NM. The exhibition tour was made possible through the generous support of Lanny and Sharon Martin.

Agnes Martin, Untitled, 1954, oil on board. Anonymous gift in honor of Vernon Nikkel. © 2013 Agnes Martin / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York.

Agnes Martin, Untitled, 1954, oil on board. Anonymous gift in honor of Vernon Nikkel. © 2013 Agnes Martin / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York.

Agnes Martin, Untitled, 1953, oil on canvas. Collection of the Harwood Museum of Art  of the University of New Mexico, Taos, NM. © 2013 Agnes Martin / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York.

Agnes Martin, Untitled, 1953, oil on canvas. Collection of the Harwood Museum of Art
of the University of New Mexico, Taos, NM. © 2013 Agnes Martin / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York.

Agnes Martin, Mid-Winter, c.1954, oil on canvas. Taos Municipal Schools Historic Art Collection, Taos, NM. © 2013 Agnes Martin / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York. Photo: Tina Larkin.

Agnes Martin, Mid-Winter, c.1954, oil on canvas.
Taos Municipal Schools Historic Art Collection, Taos, NM. © 2013 Agnes Martin / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York. Photo: Tina Larkin.

 

Main Image: Agnes Martin, New Mexico Mountain Landscape, Taos, 1947 – 1953, watercolor on paper. Gift of Mercedes Gugisberg, Raymond Jonson Collection. © 2013 Agnes Martin / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York.

*members’ previews are open to Sustaining Members and higher of the UNM Art Museum.