Abstract Expressionist painter Norman Lewis was born in Harlem, New York on July 23rd, 1909. In 1933, under the counsel of sculptor Augusta Savage, Lewis was granted an open studio space at the Harlem Art Center, formerly known as the Savage Studio of Arts and Crafts. During this influential period, the painter developed a largely figurative style that, by the 1940s, had evolved to become increasingly abstract.
Curated by Bill Hodges, A Painter’s Odyssey 1935-1979 presents a formal, close examination of the works by Norman Lewis from his figurative beginning to his abstract maturity and beyond. Hodges, who considers Lewis not an Abstract Expressionist but a “lyricist” Abstract painter, showcases the artist’s work as such. He asks the reader to consider the greater narratives that tie each work together and to observe the progression of the recurring figures in Lewis’ abstract paintings.
Norman Lewis’ works are in the permanent collection of numerous museums, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Museum of Modern Art, the Whitney Museum of American Art, the National Gallery of Art, the Saint Louis Art Museum, the Museum of Fine Art – Boston and the Delaware Art Museum.
With 65 full color reproductions, many of which never before reproduced, this 96-page catalog serves as the most comprehensive Norman Lewis reflection to come out of the Bill Hodges Gallery.
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