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Biography

Ronnie Landfield

RONNIE LANDFIELD

 

Born in 1947 in the Bronx, Ronnie Landfield established himself as a prominent artist by the age of eighteen. His astounding first major group of paintings, now referred to as the Series, delighted critics with fifteen 9-foot by 6-foot hard-edge border canvases meant to be viewed in sequence. He was invited to participate in his first exhibition at the Whitney in 1967, at age twenty, and was included again in the biennials of 1969 and 1973. He had his first solo show in 1969 at the David Whitney Gallery in New York. Remarkably, Landfield’s painting Diamond Lake was purchased in 1969 by famed architect Philip Johnson and entered the permanent collection of the Museum of Modern Art as a gift from the architect several years later. In 1969 Landfield also was awarded the William and Noma Copley (Cassandra) Foundation Grant in painting.  By the age of twenty-two, Landfield’s place in art history was already secure.

 

The lyrical canvases of Landfield’s oeuvre now stand as exemplars of American abstract painting.  His innovative combinations of stained organic forms and rectilinear bands speak to both a Post-Painterly technique and a minimalist-inflected aesthetic, allowing Landfield to shrewdly bridge several post-modern genres.  Furthermore, the blossoming forms so characteristic of Landfield’s painting work in tandem with the dynamic juxtapositions of hue to lend his pieces a quiet mysticism – Landfield writes, “If my paintings seem to be optimistic and spiritual and to express the inner core of the human soul it is to that intention that they are meant. I would become unnecessary as an artist if I ever forgot the power and the fragility and the beauty of the human spirit.”

 

At present, Landfield is in the fifth decade of his extraordinary career, and continues to stand at the forefront of contemporary art. The esteemed director of The Butler Institute of American Art, Dr. Louis A. Zona, has deemed Landfield to be “pure and simple, one of the best painters in America.”  Celebrated throughout his career, Landfield was awarded the Pollock/Krasner Foundation Grant for Painting twice – once in 1995 and again in 2001. Landfield’s paintings can be found in such important collections as the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden; the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Modern Art, and the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York City; the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis; the Art Institute of Chicago and the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, among many others.



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