Robert Motherwell


Robert Motherwell (1915-1991) is one of the founding artists of the New York School of Abstract Expressionism, and is associated with fellow artistic giants Jackson Pollock, Ad Reinhardt, and Barnett Newman. He is best known for his mature work, recognizable for its graphic composition of saturated and expressive brushstrokes. 

Robert Motherwell was well versed in literature, philosophy and the European modernist traditions. His work reflects not only a dialogue with art history, philosophy and contemporary art, but also a sincere and considered engagement with autobiographical content, contemporary events and the essential human conditions of life, death, oppression and revolution. He was generally regarded as the most articulate spokesman for Abstract Expressionism. 


Today, his works are held in the collections of the Art Institute of Chicago, the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., The Museum of Modern Art in New York, and the Tate Modern in London, among others.


Related Works

  • Helen Frankenthaler was married to Motherwell from 1958 to 1971, and was best known for her pioneering abstract expressionist work and soak-stain technique. View her work.
  • Abstract expressionist Richard Serra creates bold and dynamic monochrome paintings with unconventional materials. View his work.