Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Elaine de Kooning and Me

Elaine de Kooning

In 1938, Elaine was introduced to a Dutch immigrant artist, Willem de Kooning. She soon began studying with him, and approximately five years later, on December 9, 1943, they married. While her artistic reputation was eclipsed to some degree by his fame, she was able to forge a name as an artist and as a critic for ARTnew

I recently ran across a painting by Elaine de Kooning and wondered how her husband influenced her. It is quite evident in her work but she also holds onto her own ideas and style. While most artists are influenced by another artist they admire I find many of the women in Art who make a name for themselves and were influenced by their spouse still find a way to create their own style. See a painting by Elaine de Kooning below.

My greatist influence is Joe Mayer, my husband. Although his style is different then mine his influence has been his example of dedication, hard work and a joy in the process of painting. You can see some of his work on our web site at www.sharpmayergallery.com. Yes, he encouraged me to put my name first and I think it was a loving gesture of a man who knows how to make his wife happy.

Joe is the best.

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John F. Kennedy', 1963 painting by Elaine de Kooning,

John F. Kennedy', 1963 painting by Elaine de Kooning,
National Portrait Gallery (Washington, D. C.)