Elizabeth Frank

Elizabeth Frank

Elizabeth Frank has written extensively on both art and literature, including a biography of Louise Bogan. She has taught at Temple University, U.C. Irvine, and Williams, Mills, and Bard colleges.

Karen Gunderson

The Dark World of Light

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The first comprehensive monograph on contemporary artist Karen Gunderson written by Pulitzer Prize winner Elizabeth Frank.

Widely collected in Hollywood and New York, artist Karen Gunderson is perhaps best known for her work since the 1980s, when she transitioned from painting in color to working only in black. Over her forty-plus-year career, Gunderson has tackled subjects from clouds to royalty to the cosmos. Her long-developed, labor intensive technique, including rigorous brushwork and paint layering, employs a range of black shades that create a unique three-dimensional effect: The multiple textures from the paint catch light and make the paintings shimmer and appear to move, alternating with shadows and highlights that illuminate her subjects—historic royal figures, bodies of water, mountains, and constellations—depending on how the viewer moves in front of each artwork.

Tracing the life and career of the artist, Karen Gunderson is written by author and critic Elizabeth Frank, who won the Pulitzer Prize for her biography of poet Louise Bogan and is the author of a number of books on art, including Jackson Pollock, published by Abbeville.

Art lovers and artists interested in Gunderson’s painting technique will discover captivating works in this book—in more than 100 illustrations—that shows how the artist pushes the limits to what one can do with black paint. While abstract artists of the past, including Ad Reinhardt and Pierre Soulages, have employed black paint, Gunderson has set herself apart from this lineage. She has distinguished herself not only with her use of figurative subjects, but also the way her works radiate a quiet optimism—a sharp contrast with this dark medium.

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Jackson Pollock

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An important look at an influential — and controversial — artist.

Jackson Pollock (1912–1956) revolutionized the art of this century with his famous "pouring paintings" of the late 1940s and early '50s. No artist of our time has been more controversial, and Pollock's reputation as the archetypal Abstract Expressionist has assumed mythic overtones. The balanced evaluation presented in this well-reasoned overview is long overdue.

About the Modern Masters series

With informative, enjoyable texts and over 100 illustrations — approximately 48 in full color — this innovative series offers a fresh look at the most creative and influential artists of the postwar era. The authors are highly respected art historians and critics chosen for their ability to think clearly and write well.

Each handsomely designed volume presents a thorough survey of the artist's life and work, as well as statements by the artist, an illustrated chapter on technique, a chronology, lists of exhibitions and public collections, an annotated bibliography, and an index. Every art lover, from the casual museumgoer to the serious student, teacher, critic, or curator, will be eager to collect these Modern Masters. And with such a low price, they can afford to collect them all.

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