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Just In: Edward Dugmore Abstractions

March 16, 2018

Two Striking Edward Dugmore Abstractions in June 10, 208 Auction

After the close of World War II in 1948, American Abstract Expressionist painter Edward Dugmore (1915-1996) took advantage of the G.I. Bill to attend the cutting-edge California School of Fine Arts in San Francisco. There, he studied under renowned Abstract Expressionist Clyfford Still — an experience that would help shape Dugmore’s practice throughout his long career. Under Still’s tutelage, Dugmore’s work would take a turn in a decidedly modernist direction. During this time, his paintings increasingly embraced a kind of monumentality, spontaneity, and luminosity. Of his tenure spent at the California School of Fine Arts, Dugmore noted: “The whole feeling was huge. You felt huge. You felt all encompassing. Like the wrong end of a telescope. Instead of going into it, you sort of expanded — in conversation, in ideas. It was a great lifting kind of experience.”

Los Angeles Modern Auctions (LAMA)


Edward Dugmore, Blue-Black, 1958
June 10, 2018 Modern Art & Design Auction

After a brief stint in Mexico at the University of Guadalajara, where he received his M.F.A., Dugmore moved to New York in 1952 and quickly became associated with a group of avant-garde artists, including Willem de Kooning, Barnett Newman, Franz Kline, Jackson Pollock, and Mark Rothko, who regularly met at the Cedar Bar in Greenwich Village, and began showing at the infamous Stable Gallery. It was during this period that Dugmore began heavily experimenting with the ways in which texture could be given to flat surfaces using readily-available pigments, including watercolor, ink, acrylic, and oil paint. The result was a body of large-scale works possessing a distinct tactility for which a Dugmore work is now so readily known. Applying pigments to his canvases using a palette knife, he began to saturate his paintings with expressive swathes of luminous color achieved through wide, rhythmical brushstrokes, which he then contrasted with raw, but graceful, lines that pulsated with emotion — a practice that he would continue to pursue for the remainder of his career.

Los Angeles Modern Auctions (LAMA)


Edward Dugmore, #50, 1958
June 10, 2018 Modern Art & Design Auction

In the June 10, 2018 Modern Art & Design Auction, Los Angeles Modern Auctions (LAMA) is pleased to have the opportunity to include Dugmore’s #50 and Blue-Black (1958), two important oil on canvas works created by the artist during this pivotal moment in his career on the East Coast. Each of these striking compositions easily bears witness to Still’s sentiment that “I never wanted color to be color. I never wanted texture to be texture, or images to become shapes. I wanted them all to fuse into a living spirit.” Examples such as #50 and Blue-Black reflect a fiercely emotional quality achieved by the delicate balance between color, form, and texture.

Reference:


Dore Ashton, Edward Dugmore, Burning Bright: Paintings 1950-1959. (Los Angeles: Manny Silverman Gallery).
Edward Dugmore, interview with Marry Fuller McChesney in “A Period of Exploration,” San Francisco 1945-50, 1973.


Lot Details:

Lot 194:
Edward Dugmore
Blue-Black
1958
Oil on canvas
Signed, titled, and dated canvas verso
Canvas: 76″ x 48″; Frame: 77.625″ x 49.625″
Together with Holland-Goldowsky Gallery label and Art Institute of Chicago exhibition label
Estimate: $40,000-60,000
June 10, 2018 Modern Art & Design Auction

Lot 195:
Edward Dugmore
#50
1958
Oil on canvas
Signed, titled, and dated canvas verso; retains Holland-Goldowsky Gallery and B.C. Holland labels to canvas stretcher verso
Canvas: 36″ x 28.375″; Frame: 37.875″ x 30″
Estimate: $10,000-15,000
June 10, 2018 Modern Art & Design Auction

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