2 December 2004
Ben Shahn (1898-1969)
Farewell to New York -- All That is Beautiful
signed 'Ben Shahn' (lower right)
watercolor on paper
23 x 40¼ in. (58.4 x 102.2 cm.)
Executed circa 1965.
Kennedy Galleries, Inc., New York.
Acquired by the present owner from the above, 1968.
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O. Friedrich, "To Reform the System," Time, February 23, 1981, p. 44, illustrated.
New York, Kennedy Galleries, Inc., Ben Shahn, October 12-November 2, 1968, no. 46.
This watercolor was reproduced as a series of serigraphs in 1965, printed in black with hand coloring and with the following text added in the sky: 'All that is beautiful. But for remembrance' sake. The art of Pheidias.' "Shahn's love of history and respect for the art of ancient civilizations are reflected [in this work]...he has effectively juxtaposed the past and the present--a modern city being built through destruction of the old...Shahn describes the inspiration for this [work] as: 'The pain of seeing the city I grew up in being covered by the new wave of concrete and glass'...Shahn [has] created a work that reflects fond memories of his youth and poignantly portrays one of the dilemmas of the contemporary American scene." (K.W. Prescott, The Complete Graphic Works of Ben Shahn, New York, 1973, p. 57)
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