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Lee Krasner

American, 1908-1984


Curating Works


Lee Krasner was born in Brooklyn, New York in 1908 to a Russian Orthodox Jewish family, Krasner pursued formal art training at several New York City institutions and also studied with the influential painter Hans Hofmann. Like many of her generation, Krasner supported herself in the 1930s by working for the WPA. Her positions with the Mural Division provided her with valuable experience working on a larger scale. She was also an active member at the Artists Union and American Abstract Artists, and her commitment to such activism continued throughout her life. Krasner married the gifted, but troubled painter Jackson Pollock in 1945. Long overshadowed by Pollock, Krasner was a very established abstract artist well before she met him. Fully engaged in the New York art scene of the 1930s and 1940s, she introduced Pollock to the artist Willem de Kooning and critic Clement Greenberg, among other key figures. When her 11-year marriage ended with Pollock’s death in an automobile crash, Krasner devoted the rest of her life to promoting Pollock’s art and ensuring his legacy, while also continuing her own exploration of abstraction. In 1978, Krasner was finally accorded her rightful place alongside Pollock, Rothko, and the other leading artists of Abstract Expressionism. Her works can be found in the collections of MoMA, Whitney, Metropolitan, Guggenheim, Tate Modern, Hirshhorn Museum, Philadelphia Museum of Art, and Brooklyn Museum.