Description: Nell Blair Walden Blaine
(New York / Massachusetts, 1922-1996)
St. Lucia, April 1965
ink wash on paper
signed lower left.
From Ask Art: Nell Blaine, painter of still lifes and landscapes in brilliant colors, created abstract work that gives the appearance of being done in a carefree, totally lighthearted manner but in fact is the result of years of disciplined study. It is also an effect achieved after rehabilitation from polio, which nearly took her life.
Blaine was raised in the Richmond, Virginia, where she attended the Richmond School of Art, now Virginia Commonwealth University, between 1939 and 1942 but left its classical realist curriculum when one of the instructors introduced her to modern art.
In 1944 at age twenty two, she became the youngest member of the American Abstract Artists and exhibited hard-edged geometric paintings, mostly black and white with accents of bright colors. She joined a cooperative of abstract artists and worked so hard at organizing shows that some referred to it as the Blaine Street Gallery.
She was a strong personality who had special influence on Larry Rivers and Jane Freilicher and appeared to thrive in the New York art scene of the 1940s. However, she decided that her lifestyle was unhealthy, and she left the city, had a period of seclusion, and then went to France where she admired the work of Gustave Courbet, Jean Antoine Watteau, Eugene Delacroix, and Nicholas Poussin and took up figurative art in an abstract style.
14"H x 20"W (sight), 19 1/2"H x 25 1/4"W (frame)
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