Joan Mitchell (1925–1992)
CHAMPS, year 1990
Oil on canvas (240×200 centimeters)
Joan Mitchell is perhaps best known as a second-generation member of the New York School. Yet although she was included in the celebrated 1957 exhibition Artists of the New York School: Second Generation at the Jewish Museum in New York, Mitchell lived and worked primarily in France. While her dramatic, lushly painted works possess an active, gestural quality that connects her work to New York School artists such as Willem de Kooning, Franz Kline, and Philip Guston, her work also evokes the paintings and pastels of French Impressionists through their vivid palette and frequent references to nature. As her work incorporated both of these influences, Mitchell is frequently termed an Abstract Impressionist. Such an association is reinforced by the fact that Mitchell work primarily out of Vétheuil, a town outside of Paris where Claude Monet lived and worked, and in a strange twist of fate, that she also lived on Avenue Claude Monet.