PERLE FINE (1905-1988)
PERLE FINE (1905-1988)
PERLE FINE (1905-1988)
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Fifty Years Female: 20th Century Abstraction from a Private Collection
PERLE FINE (1905-1988)


PERLE FINE (1905-1988)
signed 'Perle Fine' (lower right); stamped with the Perle Fine Studio stamp and numbered '325' (on the reverse)
gouache on paperboard
11 3⁄4 x 16 in. (29.8 x 40.6 cm.)
Executed circa 1946.
Estate of the artist
Acquired from the above by the present owner
Arts & Architecture, May 1947, n.p. (illustrated).
K. L. Housley, Tranquil Power: The Art and Life of Perle Fine, New York, 2005, p. 97.
New York, Nierendorf Gallery, Recent Works by Perle Fine, January 1947.
San Francisco, M. H. de Young Memorial Museum, Perle Fine, 12 August 1947, no. 16.
Chicago, The McCormick Gallery, Trove: A Collection of Works by Perle Fine, June-August 2017, pp. 14-15 (illustrated).

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Julian Ehrlich
Julian Ehrlich Specialist, Head of Sale, Post-War to Present

Lot Essay

"I strive at a certain simplicity by cutting away all the non-essential elements, and whatever calligraphy remains is only that necessary to qualify the forms and render a purer, deeper emotion."
—Perle Fine

A groundbreaking ancestor of the female Abstract Expressionists to come, bold, independent Perle Fine (1905-1988) moved from Boston to New York City as a young woman in pursuit of an Art Students League education. Soon drawn into Hans Hofmann's creative orbit, Fine found support from the Guggenheim Museum, Willard Gallery and Willem de Kooning, among others, as she elbowed her way into the artistic milieu, becoming one of the first female members of the 8th Street Club. Firmly dedicated to non-objective art, yet alienated by the male-dominated culture, Fine eventually left Betty Parsons Gallery for East Hampton with her partner Maurice Berezov, where their studio became a haven for fellow artists like Lee Krasner to paint, draw, talk and teach. Her own influences came not only from her contemporaries, but also from afternoons spent sketching the work of past masters in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, which served her well, as one of the few female artists selected for the famed 9th Street Show in 1951. Her unique lyrical geometry stands out for its subtle luminosity, the graceful product of a hard-fought career.

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