Contemporary Realism

Beginning in the mid-1960’s, many artists abandoned Abstract Expressionism to develop new forms of Realist painting.  Many artists make paintings from direct observation, and some use the style to depict contemporary life.

  • Club Kids
    2001
    oil on canvas
    Steven Assael
    born New York, N.Y. 1957
    Museum purchase made possible by the Ellen E. Kirven Charitable Lead Trust for Acquisitions 2002.62

    In many of Steven Assael's works, such as Club Kids, people from the “fringe of society” are painted in scenes from their own daily reality that has been elevated to the level of a significant event.
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  • Zeppelin and Horses #1
    1995
    oil on canvas
    Philip Pearlstein
    born Pittsburgh, Pa. 1924
    Museum purchase made possible by the Ella E. Kirven Charitable Lead Trust for Acquisitions 2001.12

    Philip Pearlstein’s works show quiet interior settings in which nude figures are rendered in an unemotional way.
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  • Homecoming
    1995
    oil on linen canvas
    James W. “Bo” Bartlett III
    born Columbus, Ga. 1955
    Museum purchase made possible by Norman S. Rothschild in honor of his parents, Aleen and Irwin B. Rothschild 98.32

    The artist introduces a world where unhappiness can lie hidden beneath an image of beauty and youth.
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