#5WomenArtists: Lisa Crescenzo’s List

As part of Women’s History Month, we’re offering a week of #5WomenArtists, inspired by the National Museum of Women in the Arts. We asked some women of Swann to tell us about their five favorite female artists.

Lisa Crescenzo is the Department Manager for American Art, Contemporary Art and Prints & Drawings at Swann. She specializes in twentieth-century American modernism. Here is her list:

Louise Nevelson

I am drawn to the complexity Nevelson achieves, particularly in sculpture, through the use of constrictions, which allow chance to assist in the creative process. She is known for using found objects, including garbage from the streets of New York City, as primary elements in her monochromatic compositions. Last fall I went to Black and White: Louise Nevelson/Pedro Guerrero exhibition at the Farnsworth Art Museum, in Rockland, Maine and saw many works from their holdings, the second largest collection of Nevelson’s work in the world.

Louise Nevelson. Courtesy of The Art Story.

Louise Nevelson, Black Wall, 1959. Courtesy of the Tate.

Vija Celmins

Seeing nature through Celmins’s viewpoint feels like enlightenment. Her photorealistic approach to painting, drawing and printmaking results in a sense of submersion, while her meticulous compositions and expert draftsmanship reveals artistic talent that I admire.

Vija Celmins. Courtesy of the National Galleries of Scotland.

Vija Celmins, Untitled Portfolio, complete set of four color lithographs, 1975. Sold November 15, 2012 for $45,600.

Georgia O’Keeffe

O’Keeffe was one of the first American female artists to have gallery representation. My favorite works are dream-like views of nature from her time spent in Lake George, New York. She examines the depths of colors found in rocks, trees and leaves, for example adding violet and blue to what the untrained eye perceives as brown.

Arnold Newman, Georgia O’Keeffe, Ghost Ranch, New Mexico, silver print, 1968, printed 1970s. Sold April 18, 2013 for $4,750.

Georgia O’Keeffe, Patterns of Leaves, oil on canvas, 1923.
Courtesy of Georgia O’Keeffe.

Helen Frankenthaler

Frankenthaler’s large-format paintings from the 1970s are impressive. With each image, there is an immediate experience of color interaction, which I find captivating.

Helen Frankenthaler. Courtesy of Gagosian Gallery.

Helen Frankenthaler, Eve, color screenprint, 1995.
Sold November 12, 2015 for $12,500.

Leonora Carrington

I admire Carrington for pushing boundaries. As a young woman from a well-off family, she had the privilege of traveling Europe and Mexico and met an array of modern thinkers, writers and artists. They inspired her to use her artistic voice, both in painting and text, to explore the female psyche and identity.

Leonora Carrington. Courtesy of Apollo Magazine.

Leonora Carrington, Chapeau Chaud pour le Ski, gouache, 1939.
Sold March 5, 2015 for $18,750.

We’ll be posting more lists from the women of Swann this week!

Deborah Rogal

Atina Sutton

Christine von der Linn

Lauren Goldberg