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Last updated: 1/25/2017
Home / Gallery Tour 1 / Heroic Poetry / Gallery Tour 2 / Artists
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Robert Motherwell (American, 1915-1991): Original Prints

For introduction and bibliography, click here.
Motherwell / Motherwell 2: Madrid Suite / Motherwell 3 / Motherwell 4: Beau Geste / Motherwell 5

Josef Albers / Richard Anuszkiewicz / Charles Arnoldi / Leonard Baskin / Jack Beal / Ed Baynard / Norman Bluhm
Richard Bosman /James Brown / Alexander Calder / Warrington Colescott / Christo / George Cramer / Allan D'Arcangelo
Willem de Kooning / Richard Diebenkorn /Jim Dine / Sam Francis / Sam Gilliam / Adolph Gottlieb / Philip Guston
John Himmelfarb / / Robert Indiana / Paul Jenkins / Jasper Johns / Lester Johnson / Alex Katz / R. B. Kitaj
Ellsworth Kelly/ Nicholas Krushenick / Jacob Lawrence / Roy Lichtenstein / Richard Lindner / Manel Llèdos
Robert Motherwell / Reuben Nakian / Barnet Newman / Claes Oldenberg / Jules Olitski / Philip Pearlstein / Mel Ramos
Robert Rauschenberg / Don Reitz / Larry Rivers / James Rosenquist / George Segal / Alan Shields / Steven Sorman
Robert Stackhouse / Frank Stella / Carol Summers / Wayne Taylor / William (Bill) Weege / John Wesley / Tom Wesselman
Jack Youngerman / Adja Yunkers

Heroic Poetry: Jonna Rae Brinkman / Elaine de Kooning / Willem de Kooning / Helen Frankenthaler / Joan Miró
Joan Mitchell / Louise Nevelson / Joan Snyder / Antoni Tàpies
Irwin Hollander, a master-printer with whom Motherwell worked when he began doing lithography in the mid-sixites, was interviewed about his collaboration with Motherwell on the ten lithographs in the Madrid Suite (so named because Motherwell and Helen Frankenthaler went to Madrid on their honeymoon and began taping paper to the wall of their hotel room and drawing upon it because they liked the feel of the rough plaster under the paper). For the interview as a whole see Stephanie Terenzio & Dorothy C. Belknap, The Prints of Robert Motherwell: A Catalogue Raisonne, 1943-1990 (NY: Hudson Hills Press, 1991), 22-33:

ST: The Madrid Suite. How did it come about?

IH: It was a suite of ten. They were a simple exploration—the opportunity to work on the walls of my studio , on a French transfer paper. These walls reminded him of walls in Madrid during his honeymoon with Helen Frankenthaler. So by rubbing on these spackled walls, he could get a similar impression of texture that would be transferred to zinc and then printed.

ST: Tell me again. He actually worked on the walls?

IH: Directly. These are rubbings! . . . a transfer of feeling from Madrid to Tenth Street. So by putting a French transfer paper on the wall and taping it, he could take litho crayons and rub. Again, using five grades of pencils, five grades of crayons, five grades of blacks, five grades of washes, he could explore and touch the surfaces. And he did it ten times. Those things sold out. People really loved this kind of symbol. Rich blacks and whites—they're the most desired. These are so rare that only a few people have these. It was just like play. They have to be looked at and spoken about very differently—that's the essence of them. Here is the simple language of Motherwell, coming from the hand, the wrist, very freely, innocently, seeing the surface of the wall, not imposing his own will. . . . He's still working within a grade of five, which is pure language. The language of the greases. (32-33).

The entire Madrid Suite is illustrated in David Rosand, ed. Robert Motherwell on Paper. Drawings, Prints, Collages (NY: Abrams, 1997), 118-122. See also Siri Engberg & Joan Banach, Robert Motherwell: The Complete Prints 1940-1991 (Minneapolis: Walker Art Center, 2003) and Stephanie Terenzio & Dorothy C. Belknap, The Prints of Robert Motherwell: A Catalogue Raisonne, 1943-1990 (NY: Hudson Hills Press, 1991).
Madrid Suite I (Belknap 9, Engberg & Banach 21). Original lithograph, 1965-66. 100 signed & numbered impressions printed at Irwin Hollander's Workshop. In an interview in the Motherwell print catalogue, he talks about how Motherwell drew the images on lithographic transfer paper on walls to get the texture of the hotel room where he and Frankenthaler honeymooned. Motherwell annotated the final drawing for this lithograph: "Je t'aime ce dessin" (I love this drawing). Image size: 559x685mm. Price: $3750.
Madrid Suite II (Belknap 10, Engberg & Banach 22). Original lithograph, 1965-66. 100 signed & numbered impressions printed at Irwin Hollander's Workshop. Image size: 559x685mm. Price: $4250.
Madrid Suite V (Belknap 13, Engberg & Banach 25). Original lithograph, 1965-66. 100 signed & numbered impressions printed at Irwin Hollander's Workshop. Image size: 559x685mm. Price: $4250.
Madrid Suite VI (Belknap 14, Engberg & Banach 26). Original lithograph, 1965-66. 100 signed & numbered impressions printed at Irwin Hollander's Workshop. Image size: 559x685mm. Price: $4250.
Madrid Suite VII (Belknap 15, Engberg & Banach 27). Original lithograph, 1965-66. 100 signed & numbered impressions printed at Irwin Hollander's Workshop. Image size: 559x685mm. Price: $4250.
Madrid Suite VIII (Belknap 16, Engberg & Banach 28). Original lithograph, 1965-66. 100 signed & numbered impressions printed at Irwin Hollander's Workshop. Image size: 559x685mm. Price: $4250.
Madrid Suite IX (Belknap 17, Engberg & Banach 29). Original lithograph, 1965-66. 100 signed & numbered impressions printed at Irwin Hollander's Workshop. Image size: 559x685mm. Price: $4250.

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