Van Doren Waxter Announces Representation of The Rosemarie Beck Foundation

“I began to want to put my light on something.”
-Rosemarie Beck, 1959


Van Doren Waxter is delighted to announce exclusive representation of the Rosemarie Beck Foundation. A bold and innovative artist who emerged as a second-generation Abstract Expressionist, Rosemarie Beck’s (1923 – 2003) decades long career was characterized by a deep exploration of process and subject, with a decisive moment in 1958 when she abandoned abstraction in favor of complex narratives. Her works are held in public collections, including Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington D.C., The Hirschorn Museum, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C., and the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY, among others.

Her oeuvre spans from thickly painted layered abstractions from the 1950s to her intricate and lyrical representations of both her most beloved Greek myths to the real world around her. An often private, but exquisite embroidery practice expands her artistic output and lasted from childhood to her final years. Critically appreciated in the 1950s, this announcement coincides with a renewal of curatorial interest in the artist.

Early in her career, Beck was regarded as a member of the second generation of the New York School of Abstract Expressionists and her work was often exhibited at the annual shows of the Stable and Peridot galleries. Beginning in the late 1940s, she was mentored and promoted, first by Kurt Selgimann and then by Robert Motherwell in their respective ateliers. During this time, Beck identified as an abstract expressionist, but by the late 1950s, she had switched to the figurative focus that she would retain for the rest of her career. Beck described her transition this way: "The ore in my abstract veins had thinned. I thought I would nourish my abstract painting by painting subjects. Then I couldn't go back. I must have been a secret realist all along because I had never stopped drawing from life."
Beck taught at Queens College of New York, Vassar College, Middlebury College, the Vermont Studio Center, Parsons School of Design, and the New York Studio School of Drawing, Painting and Sculpture, where she was on the faculty until shortly before she died.
“We are honored to represent the extraordinary and important work of Rosemarie Beck,” said Elizabeth Sadeghi, Partner at Van Doren Waxter. “Beck was endlessly innovative and relentlessly dedicated to her craft, whatever the medium. We are excited to introduce her work to new audiences and further her legacy.”


March 11, 2024
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