Elizabeth Murray

sail by elizabeth murray

Elizabeth Murray (1940 – 2007) was an American painter. In 1967, Murray moved to New York, and first exhibited in 1971 in the Whitney Museum of American Art Annual Exhibition. One of her first mature works included ‘Children Meeting,’ 1978 (now in the permanent collection of the Whitney Museum, New York), an oil on canvas painting evoking human characteristics, personalities, or pure feeling through an interaction of non-figurative shapes, color, and lines. She is particularly noted for her shaped canvas paintings.

In 1999, Murray was awarded a MacArthur Fellowship. This grant led directly to opening of the Bowery Poetry Club, a Lower East Side performance arts venue run by her husband, Bob Holman. In 2007, Murray died of lung cancer. In her obituary, the ‘New York Times’ wrote that she ‘reshaped Modernist abstraction into a high-spirited, cartoon-based, language of form whose subjects included domestic life, relationships and the nature of painting itself…’

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