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Artist: Jules Olitski, Watercolors and Pastels on Paper
Jules Olitski (B. 1922- D. 2007) has long been considered a major force in American painting. He first rose to prominence in the 1960’s as one of the original masters of color field painting -- a type of abstraction that focuses on the subtlety and expressiveness of pure color. Olitski himself, made little distinction between representational and abstract art, and frequently crossed the line between them. What all his paintings have in common, whether oil on canvas, watercolor or pastel, are areas of rich lush color. Jules Olitski, again and again, tested the limits of how far a painting can be reduced to essentials of color and space without losing the power to move us deeply. His most successful paintings are staggeringly beautiful.
Although Jules Olitski is generally referred to as a painter of the New York School of Art, much of his later work, in particular from the mid 1990's, was inspired by the seascapes and landscapes that surrounded his daily life. In his exploration of artistic concepts, Olitski experimented in pioneering new techniques and materials.
During the 1960's, New York critics, struck by the originality of Jules Olitski's palette, wrote rave reviews about this -then-newly discovered painter. That originality continued throughout his career and is evident in his work -- a splendor of light, color and energy.