CONTEMPORARY MONOTYPE PHENOMENON

Cambridge Series All

Cambridge Series All
Idelle Weber, 1992
monotype, 61 x 61 cm
(24 x 24 in.), Whitney Museum of American Art, Gift of Robert Kelly


Weber Biography

For Idelle Weber, the monotype became a vehicle for the rediscovery of the Romantic landscape tradition, which led to a profound change in her approach to painting. During the 1960s she was an important member of the Pop art milieu, and during the next two decades she painted in a hard-edge, representational style that identified her as one of the leading artists of the Photorealist movement. By the mid-1980s her work was becoming more painterly, but it was not until the early 1990s, during a teaching engagement at Harvard, that she was introduced to the monotype. Weber began a series of tiny black-and-white images inspired by television shots of the Gulf War, which were quickly transformed into imaginary landscapes expressing the drama of nature and natural forces. These experiments led to larger, more ambitious monotype landscapes, as well as a radical transformation of her signature painting style. No longer concerned with descriptive color and carefully rendered forms and textures, Weber explored the expressive possibilities of tone by limiting her compositional elements to the meeting of sky and land or water at a distant horizon. Through manipulation of tone, she captured the transience of clouds, wind, atmosphere, and land formations in a drama of changing relationships.


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