Visual Arts Center Showcases Works of Artists Who Taught There

painting by Angelo Ippolito

Sarah Lawrence College is mounting an exhibition of works by prominent artists who have taught at the College in celebration of the close of its 75th anniversary year and the opening of the Monika A. and Charles A. Heimbold, Jr. Visual Arts Center. The show is the inaugural exhibit at the Center’s Barbara Walters Gallery and runs from November 6 through December 17. Works include loans from the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Whitney Museum of American Art, and the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum.

Highlighting just some of the many talents who have taught studio art at the College, featured artists include painters Marcia Hafif, Angelo Ippolito, Richard Pousette-Dart, Bradley Walker Tomlin and sculptors Seymour Lipton, Mary Miss, Theodore Roszak, and David Smith.

Forging New Visions: Teaching the Visual Arts at Sarah Lawrence College is the first part of a yearlong, three-part exhibition program that will commemorate Sarah Lawrence’s history as a catalyst for aesthetic discovery,” says Sarah Lawrence alumna Nancy Spector, Curator of Contemporary Art at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in Manhattan and curator of this exhibit.

According to Spector, Forging New Visions “comprises two different generations of artists, one emerging during the 1930s to1940s and the other, the 1970s – two periods of intense avant-garde activity that helped define the evolution of Modern and contemporary art.”

Spector explains: “From the first generation, Angelo Ippolito, Seymour Lipton, Richard Pousette-Dart, Theodore Roszak, David Smith, and Bradley Walker Tomlin each absorbed the lessons of Surrealism and Abstract Expressionism to create distinct aesthetic visions. The sculptors among them, Lipton, Roszak, and Smith, extrapolated on the tradition of welding steel, inventing hitherto unimagined techniques for constructing expressive form. Their individual styles – abstract, yet evocative of subjective states or mythic narratives – aligned them with the New York School. For Marcia Hafif and Mary Miss, the reductive sensibility of Minimalism provided the initial impulse for their unique aesthetic and conceptual explorations. Since the 1970s Hafif has pursued a career-long investigation of monochrome painting while Miss turned to environmental-scale sculpture to create a new, interactive mode of public art.

“The roster of illustrious artists and art-historians who have taught at Sarah Lawrence College since the early 1930s attests to the school’s long-abiding commitment to visual culture,” says Spector. “The spirit of innovation so fundamental to the creative arts has been a cornerstone of the institution’s academic philosophy, which values individual exploration and expression as crucial components of the education process.

“Due to its proximity to New York City, a Mecca for the arts, and its unique, open-ended academic environment, Sarah Lawrence has always been able to attract artists (as well as choreographers, musicians, writers, etc.) of the highest caliber,” Spector says.

The trilogy of shows will examine the past, present, and future of the school’s visual art programs, with the first two presentations focusing on previous and current faculty, respectively, and the third on remarkable student talent.

Sarah Lawrence is a liberal arts college for men and women, founded in 1926, with a distinctive system of education. It is known for having one of the lowest student/faculty ratios in the country. At the core of the system are small classes, regular one-on-one student-faculty conferences, cross-disciplinary approaches and the integration of the creative arts within the curriculum.

Works to be featured include:

Marcia Hafif
Red Painting: Heliogen Blue, 2001
Oil on canvas
58 x 58 inches
Courtesy of the artist and Larry Becker Contemporary Art

Angelo Ippolito
Drawing # 12, 1956
Ducco and ink on paper
15 x 22 inches
Collection of Michael Straus

Angelo Ippolito
Yellow Landscape, 1953
Oil on matteboard
11 x 17 inches
Collection of Helen and Robert Appel

Seymour Lipton
Thunderbird, 1951-1952
Bronze on steel
Length: 36-1/2 inches (92.71 cm)
Whitney Museum of American Art, Purchase, with funds from the Wildenstein Benefit Purchase Fund

Seymour Lipton
Sorcerer, 1957
Nickel silver on metal
Height: 60-3/4 inches (154.31 cm)
Whitney Museum of American Art, Purchase, with funds from the Friends of the Whitney Museum of American Art

Mary Miss
Mirror Way, Fogg Museum, Harvard University, 1980
Ink, pencil, and photos on vellum
35 x 41 inches
Courtesy of the artist

Mary Miss
South Cove, Battery Park City, 1984-87
Ink, pencil, and photos on vellum
30 x 43 inches
Courtesy of the artist

Richard Pousette-Dart
Blue Scroll, 1958
Oil and gold paint on canvas
48 x 36 inches
Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York
Gift, Mr. And Mrs. Frederic E. Ossorio, 1977

Richard Pousette-Dart
Comprehension of the Atom, Crucifixion, 1944
Oil on linen
77-1/2 x 49 inches
Estate of Richard Pousette-Dart
Richard Pousette-Dart
Ilumination Gothic, date 1958
Oil on linen
72 x 53-1/2 inches
Estate of Richard Pousette-Dart

Theodore Roszak
Cradle Song, 1955
Steel and Bronze
Height 51-7/8 inches
Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum
Gift, Mr. and Mrs. Arnold H. Maremont, 1959

David Smith
Untitled (Study for Agricola,I), 1951
46-1/4 x 36-1/2 x 11 inches
Estate of David Smith, New York
Loaned in honor of Bessie Schönberg

David Smith
Horizontal 9/4/52, 1952
Steel and brass on stainless steel base,
17-1/2 x 43-3/4 x 7 inches
Estate of David Smith, NewYork
Loaned in honor of Bessie Schönberg

David Smith
Vertical Pistol Structure, 1952
Burnished Steel,
46 x 15-3/4 x 15-1/4 inches
Estate of David Smith, New York
Loaned in honor of Bessie Schönberg

Bradley Walker Tomlin
Still Life (Inward Preoccupation), 1939
Oil on canvas
34 x 46 inches
Whitney Museum of American Art

Bradley Walker Tomlin
Burial, 1943
Oil on canvas, 30 x 44 inches
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, George A. Hearn Fund