L to R: Various installation views: "Pitti rivisatto,” Palazzo Pitti, Florence, Italy, 1997 / All artworks by George Woodman. Image 2: “Pitti, Medea, Roses,” c. 1988. 41 1/4 x 72 in / Image 4: “Untitled,” 1990. 41 1/4 x 78 in / Image 6: “Untitled,” c. 1990s. 24 x 20 in / Image 9: “Untitled,” 1990. 41 1/4 x 59 in. All gelatin silver prints.
Installation view, "Pitti rivisatto,” Palazzo Pitti, Florence, Italy, 1997.
George Woodman, “Pitti rivisatto," Palazzo Pitti, Florence, Italy, 1997: From the Archives...
Twenty-five years ago this month, George Woodman’s solo exhibition, "Pitti rivisatto," opened at the Palazzo Pitti in Florence, and remained on view all summer long. His layered black and white photographs take this Renaissance palace as their subject, but also as an opportunity to reflect on time and the experiences carried within each viewer.
.L to R: Artworks by George Woodman. "War Sadness Escape," 1999. 42 x 39 in. Gelatin silver print / Images 2 & 4: Installation views, “Contrapposto & Other Stories,” Jeff Bailey Gallery, New York, 2014 / "Boboli: Fountain of Neptune,” 1997. 71 3/4 x and 41 1/4 in. Gelatin silver print.
George Woodman. “War Sadness Escape,” 1999. 42 x 39 in. Gelatin silver print.
George Woodman's camera obscura photographs in "Contrapposto & Other Stories," Jeff Bailey Gallery, New York, 2014: From the Archives...
Summertime is here again, and each year it has brought with it a fresh crop of summer group shows around New York City. Here’s one from 2014: George Woodman’s camera obscura photographs were included in “Contrapposto & Other Stories,” curated by Katia Rosenthal at Jeff Bailey Gallery in Chelsea.
L to R: George Woodman in his early studio, Albuquerque, c. 1950s / George Woodman with one of his paintings, Boulder, c. 1970s / George Woodman in his studio, New York, c. 2000s.
George Woodman in his early studio, Albuquerque, c. 1950s.
George Woodman, born on this day in 1932: From the Archives...
"At age fourteen I decided to become an artist, ambition enough for my life,” George Woodman once wrote. And over the next seven decades, he did just that, working fervently as a painter and photographer, and also as a writer and professor. Today, we celebrate George, who was born on this day in 1932!
L to R: All artworks by George Woodman. Exhibition poster for ‘George Woodman,’ Spectrum Gallery, 1970 / “Untitled,” c. 1968-69. 30 x 22 1/4 in. Screenprint on paper / “Untitled,” 1969. 60 x 60 in. Acrylic paint on canvas.
Exhibition poster for ‘George Woodman,’ Spectrum Gallery, 1970.
George Woodman, Spectrum Gallery, 1970: From the Archives...
Fifty-two years ago this week would have been your last chance to see George Woodman’s solo exhibition at Spectrum Gallery in New York City. Woodman’s canvases and prints during this period were characterized by fields of interlocking, repetitive shapes, which, as Robert Berlind later described: “may be seen as a reprise of the transition earlier in the century from a still-descriptive cubism to a “purer” non-referentiality. These paintings are equally in keeping with the contemporaneous interests of Op Art and made a crucial contribution to the Criss-Cross movement which flourished in the 70’s in Boulder and had an impact on the New York scene.”
L to R: Images 1-3: Processing George Woodman’s paper tiles in our archive, 2022 / Images 4-5: George Woodman’s paper tile installation, Denver Art Museum, 1980 / Images 6-7: George Woodman’s paper tile installation, unknown location, 1981.
Processing George Woodman’s paper tiles in our archive, 2022.
George Woodman's paper tiles, 1980-81: From the Archives...
Although the Woodman Family Foundation archives are starting to take shape, there is still much more material to process before we are ready to open them up to scholars and researchers. Currently, we are processing George Woodman’s paper tiles and related plans, descriptions and documentation so that we can better understand this key aspect of his practice, which took his work with pattern off the canvas and into space and situation.
L to R: All artworks by George Woodman. “Cannon," 1980. 66 x 66 in. Acrylic paint on canvas / Images 2-6: Pages from the exhibition catalogue for “19 Artists—Emergent Americans,” The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York / "La Grande Fontaine du Printemps," 1980. 85 x 84 in. Acrylic paint on canvas / "Tessellation Sky,” 1975. 54 1/2 x 54 1/2 in. Acrylic paint on canvas. Collection The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum.
George Woodman. “Cannon," 1980. 66 x 66 in. Acrylic paint on canvas.
George Woodman, "19 Artists—Emergent Americans," The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, 1981: From the Archives...
Forty-one years ago, 19 Artists—Emergent Americans was presented at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York featuring seven paintings by George Woodman, among work by eighteen of his contemporaries including Barbara Kruger, Guy de Cointet, and Manny Farber. The exhibition reflected curator Peter Frank’s desire to present the artists’ work as a series of small retrospectives. “What I have sought to assemble at the Guggenheim Museum is the skilled and confident visual articulation of engrossing ideas by individuals who have not been sufficiently recognized for their accomplishment,” he wrote.
L to R: Images 1-5: George Woodman’s AAA Triptik map from Boston, MA to Albuquerque, NM, 1954 / George Woodman. “Untitled,” 1955. 26 x 34 in. Oil paint on canvas.
George Woodman’s AAA Triptik map from Boston, MA to Albuquerque, NM, 1954.
George Woodman's trip from Boston, MA to Albuquerque, NM: From the Archives...
In the summer of 1954, recent college graduate George Woodman set out from Boston towards Albuquerque, New Mexico. He had a degree in philosophy, and a desire to study painting in a more concentrated way than he had been able to do as an undergraduate student supplementing his Harvard education with art courses at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts Boston. He and Betty Woodman—who had been married just a year—followed this set of Triptik maps across the country, carefully tracking miles and expenses along the way until they arrived at the University of New Mexico.
L to R: Cover and pages from “The Further Adventures of Pinocchio,” published in 2004. Photographs by George Woodman. Poetry by Edwin Frank / Pinocchio in the Woodman Family Foundation archives, 2021.
L to R: Cover of “The Further Adventures of Pinocchio,” published in 2004. Photographs by George Woodman. Poetry by Edwin Frank
A collaborative poem and picture tale by George Woodman and Edwin Frank, "The Further Adventures of Pinocchio," 2004: From the Archives...
Around 2003, George Woodman began incorporating a green wooden Pinocchio into the assemblages of toys, props and images he used to construct his photographs. Pinocchio is an iconic figure in Italian literature and culture, popularized by the classic children’s novel “The Adventures of Pinocchio,” written by Florentine author Carlo Collodi in the late 19th century. Woodman was interested in Pinocchio as the protagonist in his own picture stories.
L to R: Our archives intern Molly McBride Jacobson digs into unsorted family photographs from our archives, 2021.
Our archives intern Molly McBride Jacobson digs into unsorted family photographs from our archives, 2021.
Our archives intern Molly McBride Jacobson digs into unsorted family photographs from our archives: From the Archives...
The Woodman Family Foundation archives include boxes and boxes of family photographs, spanning the early days George and Betty spent in Albuquerque where they welcomed their son Charlie into the world; to their move to a modernist home in Boulder—the site of many birthday parties, pottery sales, impromptu installations of paintings and Francesca’s earliest experiments with “dress up;” until just a few years ago enjoying breakfast with their grandson Alexander in both New York and Antella.
George Woodman. “Untitled,” c. 1970. 96 x 134 in. Acrylic on canvas.
George Woodman. “Untitled,” c. 1970. 96 x 134 in. Acrylic on canvas.
George Woodman, "Untitled," c. 1970
Last week was an exciting one at the Woodman Family Foundation. Upon their long-awaited return to New York, we were treated to a room full of George Woodman’s paintings. And wow we were bowled over by how fresh and contemporary these paintings feel, despite the fact that they were made some 50 years ago. We were struck by the subtle and shifting interplay of color and pattern and the raw intelligence of George's approach, which are slowly revealed over the course of a lingering look. What a pleasure to see these ambitious and original works in person.
L to R: Installation view, “Low Balustrade Screen” (1981) at Haber-Theodore Gallery, New York, 1982 / George Woodman. "Low Balustrade Screen," 1981. 151 1/2 x 42 in. Acrylic on canvas, five panels with hinges / Brochure for exhibition “Partitions” at Pratt Manhattan Center Gallery, New York, 1982.
Installation view, George Woodman, “Low Balustrade Screen” (1981) at Haber-Theodore Gallery, New York, 1982
George Woodman in "Partitions" at Pratt Manhattan Gallery, New York, 1982: From the Archives...
In the fall of 1982, the exhibition “Partitions” at Pratt Manhattan Center Gallery featured the work of 15 artists—including George Woodman—concerned with contemporary interpretations of screens. As hybrid sculptural, decorative, functional objects, partitions and interest in them were a kind of corollary to the burgeoning Pattern and Decoration Movement, and described by critic John Perreault, who wrote the exhibition’s essay, as “ubiquitous,” “a phenomenon,” and “a challenge to some preconceptions about art."