26 March 2009

Beloved Curiosity: Alice Neel

Alice Neel was an American portrait painter whose pieces are noted their intense emotion and expressionistic qualities. She married a Cuban painter, Carlos Enriquez, and they moved to Havana where she became part of the Cuban avant-garde set. In 1930, Neel suffered a massive nervous breakdown (perhaps brough on by the untimely death of her first child and her husband and second child abandoning her only a few years later), and she spent a year in a sanitorium. She worked through the Depression, having been hired by the WPA. In the 50s she appeared alongside Ginsburg in the Robert Frank film, Pull My Daisy. Neel's fame really grew through the feminist movement of the 1960s.

Visit her official web site here.

Here are some of her beautiful pieces...

left: "Nadja," 1928.
right: "Rhoda Myers with Blue Hat," 1930.

left: "The Spanish Family," 1943.
right: "Robert Smithson," 1962.

left: "Blue House," 1964.
right: "Hartley," 1965.

left: "Nancy and Olivia," 1967.
right: "Pregnant Julie and Algis," 1967.

left: "Gerard Malanga," 1969.
right: "Nancy and the Twins," 1971.

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