Lecture: Still & Art
Sep 28, 2017
Join us for a thought-provoking lecture with Still & Art curator David Anfam to examine Still’s dialogue with world art history and its impact on Still as an artist.
At the time of his mammoth 1979 retrospective at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, Clyfford Still provocatively declared, “My work is not influenced by anybody.” While many observers have regarded this view as merely typical of the artist’s notoriously intransigent sense of isolation, in hindsight Still’s words ring true at a deeper level. On one hand, the concept of “influence” suggests external forces—other artists, received knowledge, history, and so forth—acting upon a passive mind. On the other hand, Still’s vision was intensely active. As such, his deep knowledge of world art history enabled him to “take and break,” as it were, a wealth of images and ideas ranging from the distant to the recent past. He then transformed these points of reference into his own intensely personal idiom.
Ponti Hall at the Denver Art Museum