The Biggest Lie About Abstract Expressionism

Anne Ryan, “Untitled” (1951), mixed media collage on paper (image courtesy Vallarino Fine Art, New York, and Huxley-Parlour Gallery, London, © Estate of Anne Ryan)

Abstract Expressionism is a storied movement continually re-told at blockbuster museums: We think we know it so well. The story, however, is still wrong. There are no women in it. The most recent show in the United Kingdom was at the Royal Academy of Arts in London in 2017. The exhibition projected an outdated image of the swaggering machismo the movement has come to be known for. Lee Krasner was the only woman exhibited. 

More recently, a bold exhibition at Huxley-Parlour Gallery in London entitled Women and the Void, hoped to correct this.

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