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Nancy Princenthal on Agnes Martin

Artist Agnes Martin, revered pioneer of abstract painting, led a fascinating and reclusive private life. In celebration of the first biography of the artist, The New York Public Library hosted its author, New York-based critic and former Senior Editor of Art in America, Nancy Princenthal, to discuss the artist’s formative experiences, the development of her work, and the range of lively non-mainstream art communities in which she lived. In this recording from June 10, 2015, Princenthal details Martin's elusive nature and discusses the trials and adventures of her writing process with artist/organizer Arezoo Moseni.

The release of this unprecedented book, Agnes Martin: Her Life and Art (Thames and Hudson), coincides with the first retrospective exhibition of the artist's work since 1994, on view at the Tate Modern in London from June 3 through October 11, 2015.

Over the course of a career that spanned fifty years, Agnes Martin’s austere, serene work anticipated and helped to define Minimalism, even as she battled psychological crises and carved out a solitary existence in the American Southwest. Martin identified with the Abstract Expressionists but her commitment to linear geometry caused her to be associated in turn with Minimalist, feminist, and even outsider artists.

The NYPL program series An Art Book, initiated and organized by Arezoo Moseni, is a celebration of the essential importance and beauty of art books. The events showcase book presentations and discussions by world renowned artists, critics, curators, gallerists, historians and writers. Special thanks The New York Public Library for sharing this event with our listeners.


New York Public Library


The New York Public Library's public programs of the Artist Dialogues Series, are recorded and shared with as part of a partnership coordinated by artist, curator, and senior librarian Arezoo Moseni.


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