Approached by the Museum after the acquisition of this untitled painting, Alex Katz reminisced in 1983 in a letter from Lincolnville, Maine, where he summers: “The landscape … was painted in Skowhegan in 1960. It’s at the art school where I was teaching that summer. The view is facing east near the center of the art school—the bridge and pond still exist.” Introduced to Maine’s luscious landscapes and brilliant light as a young student in 1949, Katz was first appointed a member of the faculty of the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in the summer of 1960. This painting feels loose, as if the artist let his mind wander while he captured the essence of the scene. In its carefree use of gesture, the painting conjures Katz’s joy in working en plein air and testifies to his unmatched eye for color and composition.
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