Rabu, 18 Januari 2012

Irving Amen – woodcuts

Born in New York City in 1918, Irving Amen was drawing at the age of four. A scholarship to the Pratt Institute was awarded to him when he was fourteen years old. With Michelangelo as his idol, he spent seven years in life classes perfecting his drawing.

From 1942 to 1945 he served with the Armed Forces. He headed a mural project and executed murals in the United States and Belgium. His first exhibition in woodcut was held at the New School for Social Research and his second at the Smithsonian Institute in 1949, and in 1949 he travelled to Paris to study for a year. On his return to the United States he had one man shows in New York and Washington DC.

In 1953, Amen travelled throughout Italy. This resulted in a series of eleven woodcuts, eight etchings and a number of oil paintings. One of these woodcuts, Piazza San Marco #4 and its four woodblocks constitute a permanent exhibit of block printing in colour at the Smithsonian Institution. Travel in Israel, Greece and Turkey in 1960 led to a retrospective show at the Artist's House in Jerusalem.

Piazza San Marco #4
Irving Amen has taught at Pratt Institute and at the University of Notre Dame. He had a show of woodcuts at the Artists Studio in NYC. Commissions include a Peace Medal in honour of the Vietnam War. He created designs for 12 stained glass windows 16 feet high depicting the Twelve Tribes of Israel, commissioned by Agudas Achim Synagogue in Columbus, Ohio. He is listed in Mantle Fielding's Dictionary of American Painters, Sculptors and Engravers and the Dictionary of Contemporary American Artists by Paul Cummings. He was elected member of Accademia Fiorentina Delle Arti Del Disegno, an organisation to which Michelangelo belonged.

1948 Promenade

1950 Times Square #4

1954 Piazza San Marco

1954 Rialto and Bridge of Sighs

1954 Slaughtered Houses

1975 Flight


Bird Watcher

Florence, Italy


Girl with a Ball

In My Father's House Are Many Mansions

Italian Landscape

Many Children Dwell in My Father's House


Palazzo Vecchio

Pensive Girl #6

Piazza San Marco #1


The Basket Offering

Three Graces

Chess Players

Chess Players

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