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Karen K. Butler

Frederick Hartt and American Abstraction in the 1950s: Building the Collection at Washington University in St. Louis


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Karen K. Butler with contribution by William E. Wallace 

In the 1950s, esteemed Renaissance scholar Frederick Hartt served as curator of the Washington University art collection and professor in what was then known as the Department of Art and Archaeology. Hartt greatly expanded the collection’s holdings during his tenure, acquiring a number of significant examples of vanguard American modernism, including seminal works by Stuart Davis, Willem de Kooning, Arthur Dove, Lyonel Feininger, Arshile Gorky, Marsden Hartley, and Jackson Pollock. This booklet offers a unique view into the development of the Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum’s permanent collection at a critical moment when American avant-garde practices entered the world art scene. 

Brochure 32 pp.