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Anne Tabachnick: Works from the Sixties and Seventies
Anne Tabachnick, Studio with Artist and Sitter, c[1]. 1965, 49 x 79 in.
NEW YORK.- Lori Bookstein Fine Art presents its fifth exhibition of paintings by Anne Tabachnick [1927–1995]. The show's focus of mid-career work from the early 1960s through the mid 1970s is largely composed of still lives and interior scenes which synthesize the tangible objects of the artist's daily life – the vases or paintings in her studio – with the Matissean space she created from more illusory sources.

Strongly influenced by the New York School artists – Tabachnick spent four years under the tutelage of Hans Hofmann, but also studied with Nell Blaine and William Baziotes, and maintained life-long friendships with Leland Bell, Louisa Matthiasdottir, Jane Freilicher, Larry Rivers, Bob Thompson and, especially, Robert de Niro, Sr. – she nonetheless developed an enduring personal style. Her experimentation with calligraphic lines and outlines emerges in these pictures, as does her technique of layering multiple thin washes of paint over charcoal drawings in various stages of materialization. The importance of the painting process was as critical for Tabachnick as it was to so many others of her generation – but her results were unique in how the energy expended produced such satisfyingly meditative images. A self-described "lyrical expressionist," Tabachnick could be at once grounded to and disconnected from her subject. In "Blue Quilt–MacDowell" (1971), she chooses the most traditional of items for a still life study (a melon, a vase, a bouquet of flowers) but disperses them across an ethereal blue ground, arranged loosely along an imperfect grid. The objects depicted in her paintings, while filled with the essence of the thing represented, come together to transmit an abstracted state of the world which has decidedly little to do with reality.

In addition to adapting the Abstract Expressionist ethos to suit her needs, Tabachnick was adept at learning the lessons of European Masters – El Greco, Bonnard, Cézanne and Matisse were among her favorites – but the evidence of even older sources, like Mai-Mai Sze's seventeenth century Mustard Seed Garden Manual of Painting, is clearly present in her adaptation of calligraphic line-making and vertical space.

Anne Tabachnick's many honors and awards include the Longview Foundation Award (1960), grants from Radcliffe's Bunting Institute (1967 and 1969), grants from the Creative Artists Program (1975 and 1978), the Adolph and Esther Gottlieb Fellowship (1982) and the John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship (1983). In 1985, Tabachnick was appointed artist in residence at Altos de Chavon in the Dominican Republic and received numerous invitations to the MacDowell and Yaddo art colonies. Her work has been exhibited at the Museum of Modern Art, the National Academy of Design, the Hyde Collection (in a one-person show) and the Bunting Institute at Radcliffe College.

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