Franz Kline
1910-1962

Born in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania in 1910, Franz Kline would go on to develop a distinctive style of Abstract Expressionism typified by his use of a contrasting black and white palette.  His art education would begin in Boston, Massachusetts, where he would study at the Boston Art Student’s League from starting in 1931.  In 1936, Kline moved to London, England to study at Healtherly’s School of Fine Art.  Kline returned to the United States in 1939 and he spent much of the next few years creating cityscapes and landscapes of areas where he spent his childhood as well as commissioned portraits and murals.

In the early 1940′s, Kline began to associate with prominent artists such as Willem de Kooning and Jackson Pollock.  Accordingly, these influences would direct Kline’s work in a more abstract direction as he abandoned the figurative and landscape styles that he worked in throughout the 1930′s.  By the late 1940′s, with particular guidance from De Kooning, Kline’s unique style was coming into it’s own as he built his reputation as an Abstract Expressionist.  He held his first solo exhibition in 1950 at the Egan Gallery in New York which cemented him as a key figure in the movement.  By the end of the 1950′s Kline would begin to reintroduce color into his palette which had become primarly monochromatic up to that point.  Ultimately Kline would view it as a failed experiment due to his personal dissatisfaction with the results.  In 1961 Kline became ill and his artistic output began to decline.  In the following year, 1962, he would die of rheumatic heart disease in New York City.

Collections Include:
Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, Illinois
Dallas Museum of Art, Dallas Texas
Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington, D.C.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, New York
Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Texas
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Massachusetts
Museum of Modern Art, New York, New York
National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.
San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, San Francisco, California
Allen Art Museum at Oberlin College, Oberlin, Ohio
Cleveland Museum of Art, Cleveland, Ohio
Kunstmuseum Basel, Switzerland
Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes, Buenos Aires, Argentina
North Carolina Museum of Art, Raleigh, North Carolina
Philadelphia Museum of Art, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington, D.C.

1910 – Franz Kline is born in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania
1931 – Began studies at the Boston Art Student’s League, Boston, Massachusetts
1936 – Began studies at Heatherly’s School of Fine Arts, London, England
1939 – Returned to the United States
1950 – Solo Exhibition at the Egan Gallery, New York, New York
1962 – Died in New York, New York

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