Helen Frankenthaler (American, 1928 – 2011)
Lush Spring, 1975
Acrylic on canvas
93 x 118 in (236 x 300 cm)
Phoenix Art Museum
© 2016 Helen Frankenthaler Foundation, Inc./ARSNY


One critic praised Lush Spring as “an orchestration of vibrant, watery greens in which shifting lights and shadows of nature are evoked without even being precisely described.” Indeed, this abstract work might register a sensation of the tentative approach of spring, manifest through the first green shoots and fragile, blushing buds, almost translucent in the low light of the season. For this picture, Frankenthaler used a different technique than usual. Instead of allowing unprimed canvas to participate in the composition, she tinted the entire support with a cool grayish-green tone before working into it, rubbing and staining with verdant, white, and rose tones.


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