THE TRAJECTORY IS WELL KNOWN, from Newburgh to Spencertown, with some significant stops in betweenrural Jersey, Boston and Paris, Coenties Slip and Chatham. Paintings are the signposts left along the way, color-coded markers of distance and direction. An abstract autobiography. Ellsworth Kelly sharpened his instinctive feeling for form with an exacting modernist sensibility. But despite the rigor and the reduced means, his work was essentially popular, made accessible through a selection of found sources: a shadow, a leaf, an architectural detail. Each familiar object is given an independent existence as a concrete force, the perfect product of Yankee invention and ingenuity.
In the 1970s, Kelly returned to the Hudson Valley, reanimating his boyhood fascination with nature and his ardor for bird-watching. This early passion for shape, color, and flight would become a foundational
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