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Leon Polk Smith, Untitled, 1950.

Blanton Museum of Art Acquires Trove of Leon Polk Smith Works

The Blanton Museum of Art at the University of Texas at Austin has announced that it has been gifted seven works by American abstract painter Leon Polk Smith. The works come to the museum from the Leon Polk Smith Foundation and longtime Austin-based philanthropists Jeanne and Michael Klein.

“This concentration of works by Leon Polk Smith brings historical depth to our holdings of postwar American painting and allows us to highlight Smith’s pioneering role in the development of abstract painting in the United States, from the new dynamism he brought to geometric abstraction to his prescient shaped canvases,” museum director Simone Wicha said.

The seven works, which were created between 1942 and 1959, showcase the artist’s interests in line, color, and the concept of space as “a positive force.” Three paintings—GWB, 1945/94, Moon, 1958–59, and Yellow White Sun, 1958–59—will be displayed at the museum this fall and one of the works on paper will be part of an exhibition in museum’s paper vault gallery, opening in the spring.

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