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Last updated: 1/25/2017
Home / Gallery Tour 1 / Gallery News / Gallery Tour 2 / Artists

Original prints: Joan Mitchell (1926-1992): Bedford Series

Mitchell 1: Sunflowers / Mitchell 2: Trees and Fields / Mitchell 3: First and Last Prints / Mitchell 4: Bedford Series
For brief comments and bibliography, see Mitchell 1

Bird / Brinkman / Frankenthaler / Lledos / Miró / Mitchell / Motherwell / Nevelson / Joan Snyder / Tal-Coat / Tàpies / Van Velde

Jennifer Bartlett, Lynda Benglis, Louise Bourgeois, Jonna Rae Brinkman, Louisa Chase, Chryssa, Sue Coe, Susan Crile,
Lesley Dill, Helen Frankenthaler, Jane Freilicher, Nancy Graves, Harmony Hammond, Judy Chicago,
Anita Jung, Elaine de Kooning, Joyce Kozloff, Lee Krasner, Karen Kunc, Ellen Lanyon, Georgia Marsh, Suzanne McClelland,
Phyllis McGibbon, Joan Mitchell, Elizabeth Murray, Judith Murray, Louise Nevelson, Judy Pfaff,
Jaune Quick-to-see Smith, Joan Root, Susan Rothenberg, Betye Saar, Niki de St. Phalle, Hollis Sigler, Kiki Smith,
Joan Snyder, Pat Steir, May Stevens, Dorothea Tanning, and Emmi Whitehorse
In Joan Mitchell: Bedford Series (Bedford: Tyler Graphics, 1981), Barbara Rose (author of American Art Since 1900 and Autocritique: Essays on Art and Anti-Art, 1963-1987) suggests that Joan Mitchell attempted to "translate her painterly vision into a print medium" and adds that her collaboration with Ken Tyler "is clearly a triumph for both." Rose goes on to describe the scene at the studio: "Mitchell is a painstaking and careful worker. No snap decisions. She works on her lithographs as she paints, revising, considering, criticizing the work in a process that takes time. 'Ken,' she says, 'I want to try a color like the color of dying sunflowers.' Her instructions are precise but not literal. What she has in mind is a sensation, not an objection or even a place. Mitchell, with her roots in American action painting and the romantic subjective esthetic of the New York School, paints an inner vision. The 'landscapes' she paints are expressions of emotions felt, not of things seen. Joan Mitchell's lithographs are an extension of her recent painting." All 10 of the lithographs are illustrated in this publication.

See also Jane Livingston, The Paintings of Joan Mitchell (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2002), the text published on the occasion of a major traveling retrospective that opened at the Whitney Museum of American Art in June 2002 and traveled over the next two years to The Birmingham Museum of Art, the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth, and then to the Phillips Collection in Washington D.C. This work included full-page color reproductions of Bedford I and Bedford II.

Selected Bibliography: John Ashbery, Joan Mitchell 1992 (NY: Robert Miller Gallery, 1993); Judith E. Bernstock, Joan Mitchell (NY: Hudson Hills/Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art, 1988); John Cheim, Joan MItchell: ". . .  my black paintings . . ." 1964 (NY: Robert Miller Gallery, 1994); James Harithas, Joan Mitchell: 'My Five Years in the Country' - An exhibition of forty-nine paintings (Syracuse: Everson Museum of Art, 1972); Klaus Kertess, Joan Mitchell (NY: Abrams, 1997); Klaus Kertess, Joan Mitchell Pastel (NY: Robert Miller Galery, 1992), Jane Livingston, The Paintings of Joan Mitchell (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2002); Richard Marshall, Joan Mitchell (Valencia: IVAM, 1997); Richard D. Marshall, Joan Mitchell: The Last Paintings (NY: Cheim & Read, 2011); Joan Mitchell. Catalogue Exposition Galerie nationale du Jeu de Paume (Paris: Galerie nationale du Jeu de Paume, 1994); Suzanne Page et al, Joan Mitchell: Choix de Peintures 1970-1982 (Paris: ARC, 1982); Alfred Paquement, ed. Joan Mitchell (Paris: Galerie nationale du Jeu de Paume, 1995); Sandro Parmiggiani, ed. Joan Mitchell: La pittura dei Due Mondi / La peinture des Deux Mondes (Ginevra/Milano, 2009); Barbara Rose, Joan Mitchell: Bedford Series (Bedford: Tyler Graphics, 1981); Marcia Tucker, Joan Mitchell (NY: Whitney Museum, 1974); Michel Waldberg, Joan Mitchell (Paris: La Difference, 1999: a massive monograph—347 pp. with 252 color illustrations—that is the most important monograph on Mitchell so far, still available only in French and selling for about $1500!).
Flower II (Walker Art Center 370: JM8). Original 2-color lithograph, 1981. 70 signed and numbered impressions on Arches wove paper printed and published by Tyler Graphics in Bedford N. Y. This work was printed in two colors in two runs on two aluminum plates. Illustrated in Martin Friedman, ed. Tyler Graphics: The Extended Image (Minneapolis: Walker Art Center, 1987), p. 76. Image size: 1080x826mm. Price: $8500.
Flower III (Walker Art Center 371: JM9). Original 4-color lithograph, 1981. 70 signed and numbered impressions on Arches wove paper (of which ours is n. 24/70) printed and published by Tyler Graphics in Bedford N. Y. This is one of the ost electric of the first Bedford Suite: the colors are rich and seem to pop off the sheet of pure white paper. The ink is dense and looks very painterly. This was printed in four colors in four runs on four aluminum plates. Image size: 1080x826mm. Price: SOLD.

The paper is actually the same color as the others in the Bedford Suite; the photograph does not show the white of the paper in its full whiteness.
Sides of a River II (Walker Art Center 367: JM5). Original 7-color lithograph, 1981. 70 signed and numbered impressions on Arches wove paper printed and published by Tyler Graphics in Bedford N. Y. Illustrated in Martin Friedman, ed. Tyler Graphics: The Extended Image (Minneapolis: Walker Art Center, 1987), p. 76. Image size: 1080x826mm. Price: SOLD
Sides of a River III (Walker Art Center 368: JM6). Original 2-color lithograph, 1981. 70 signed and numbered impressions on Arches wove paper printed and published by Tyler Graphics in Bedford N. Y. This work was printed in two colors in two runs on two aluminum plates. Illustrated in Martin Friedman, ed. Tyler Graphics: The Extended Image (Minneapolis: Walker Art Center, 1987), p. 76. Image size: 1080x826mm. Price: $7500.
Trees II (Diptych). Original 4-color lithograph, 1992. 34 signed & numbered impressions on Rives BFK paper plus 8 Artist's proofs, 4 Presentation proofs, the RTP proof, two Printers' Proofs (of which ours is p.p. II), and an Archive proof. Signed on the lower right of the right sheet and annotated "p.p. II." Published by Tyler Graphics. The lithographs have the look and "feel" of Mitchell's pastels because she and Ken Tyler fixed up special oil sticks with copier toner mixed in to give it the look of a pastel. Tyler has gone out of business and all of the works are sold. Image size: each sheet: 1454x1041mm (57.5x41 inches); as pictured, the two pieces in their frames cover 62-1/8 x94-1/2 inches or about 5x8 feet. Price: $22,000.

PS The piece is printed on a uniformly white paper, appearances to the contrary.To get a relative sense of the size, each of the sheets in the triptych is about the same as the one below. We just couldn't fit side-by-side illustrations of two works that large on our website.
Sunflower V. Original 4-color lithograph, 1992. 34 signed & numbered impressions. Published by Tyler Graphics. The lithographs have the look and "feel" of Mitchell's pastels because she and Ken Tyler fixed up special oil sticks with copier toner mixed in to give it the look of a pastel. Tyler has gone out of business and all of the works are sold. Image size: 1455x1040mm. Price: SOLD

PS The piece is printed on a uniformly white paper, appearances to the contrary.

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