Ellsworth Kelly: A Colourful Life

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Ellsworth Kelly is shaping his legacy as precisely as one of his geometric canvases. Collaborating with scholar Yve-Alain Bois, the 92-year-old artist has been preparing a multivolume catalogue raisonné documenting his extensive (and ever-growing) output. Bois had unfettered access to Kelly in his upstate New York studio, and the richness of their exchanges enlivens the first volume, just released by Editions Cahiers d’Art. A detailed taxonomy but also a great origin story, the book is devoted mostly to the six years the young artist spent in Paris, when he adopted the monochrome, among other career-defining strategies. “Everything he ever accomplished sprouted from this formative moment,” writes Bois of this period. Indeed, Kelly has never lost that clarity of purpose. – Meghan Dailey

BUY NOW Ellsworth Kelly: Catalogue Raisonné of Paintings, Reliefs, and Sculpture, Volume 1, 1940–1953, Editions Cahiers d’Art. $395/€375

Ellsworth Kelly: A Colourful Life

  • Michel Grinberg, courtesy Ellsworth Kelly Archives © Ellsworth Kelly
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    The volume includes many wonderful, little-known photographs, including Sante Forlano's Ellsworth Kelly with "Cité", taken in Paris in 1953, the year Kelly turned 30.



     



    BUY NOW  Ellsworth Kelly: Catalogue Raisonné of Paintings, Reliefs, and Sculpture, Volume 1, 1940–1953, Editions Cahiers d’Art. $395/€375

  • Katherine Du Tiel, courtesy SFMOMA © Ellsworth Kelly
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    Volume 1 has 400 color illustrations, including Self-Portrait with Thorn, 1947 (San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. Gift of the artist). Click through for 12 more works that illustrate Kelly's artistic journey during his formative years


  • Jerry L. Thompson, courtesy Ellsworth Kelly Archives © Ellsworth Kelly
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    Ellsworth Kelly
    Doorway, 1947

  • Ron Amstutz, courtesy Ellsworth Kelly Archives © Ellsworth Kelly
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    Ellsworth Kelly
    Byzantine Head I, 1948

  • Jerry L. Thompson, courtesy Matthew Marks Gallery © Ellsworth Kelly
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    Ellsworth Kelly
    Plant II, 1949

  • Jerry L. Thompson, courtesy Ellsworth Kelly Archives © Ellsworth Kelly
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    Ellsworth Kelly
    Kilometer Marker, 1949
    San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the Doris and Donald Fisher Collection at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and the Helen and Charles Schwab Collection

  • Hulya Kolabas, courtesy Ellsworth Kelly Archives © Ellsworth Kelly
    Ellsworth Kelly
    Window, Museum of Modern Art, Paris, 1949


  • Katherine Du Tiel, courtesy SFMOMA © Ellsworth Kelly
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    Ellsworth Kelly
    White Relief, 1950
    San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the Doris and Donald Fisher Collection at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and the Helen and Charles Schwab Collection

  • Jerry L. Thompson, courtesy Ellsworth Kelly Archives © Ellsworth Kelly
    Ellsworth Kelly
    La Combe II, 1951

  • Courtesy SFMOMA © Ellsworth Kelly
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    Ellsworth Kelly
    Cité, 1951
    San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the Doris and Donald Fisher Collection at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and the Helen and Charles Schwab Collection

  • Courtesy MOMA © Ellsworth Kelly
    Ellsworth Kelly
    Colors for a Large Wall, 1951
    The Museum of Modern Art, New York. Gift of the artist.

  • Courtesy Glenstone © Ellsworth Kelly
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    Ellsworth Kelly
    Painting for a White Wall, 1952
    Glenstone

  • Courtesy The Art Institute of Chicago © Ellsworth Kelly
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    Ellsworth Kelly
    Train Landscape, 1953

  • Hulya Kolabas, courtesy Ellsworth Kelly Archives © Ellsworth Kelly
    Ellsworth Kelly
    Spectrum Colors Arranged by Chance, 1951-53
    San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the Doris and Donald Fisher Collection at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and the Helen and Charles Schwab Collection

  • Sante Forlano, courtesy Ellsworth Kelly Archives © Ellsworth Kelly
    Sante Forlano
    Ellsworth Kelly with reliefs, Paris, 1950



     



    BUY NOW  Ellsworth Kelly: Catalogue Raisonné of Paintings, Reliefs, and Sculpture, Volume 1, 1940–1953, Editions Cahiers d’Art. $395/€375

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