Jane Freilicher 1924 - 2014 American Painterly Realism Painters
Jane Freilicher was born in Brooklyn and did not seriously consider art as a career until she was at Brooklyn College. Her friend and fellow artist Nell Blaine encouraged her to study with Hans Hofmann. “It was very intimidating at first,” Freilicher later recalled, “but it was the beginning of the commitment to being an artist." Although she explored nonobjective painting at this early stage, she eventually grew more concerned with representing the surrounding world. Along with the painter and critic Fairfield Porter, Freilicher has been credited with developing what became known as “painterly realism.” In 1952, Porter reviewed her first one-woman exhibition at the prestigious Tibor de Nagy Gallery, and they became friends. Freilicher, along with the de Koonings and Larry Rivers, recommended Porter to the management at Tibor de Nagy, and he began showing there. In addition to Porter, Rivers, the de Koonings, and many other artists, Freilicher counted among her friends several poets of the New York School, including John Ashbery, Kenneth Koch, Frank O’Hara, and James Schuyler. In the 1950s, the artist visited Porter and his family in Southampton. This prompted her to purchase property in Water Mill with her husband, Joe Hazan, later in the decade. In 1960, they built a house overlooking Mecox Bay and erected a studio for Freilicher the next year. Freilicher incorporates the freedom of the Abstract Expressionist brushstroke into her representations of the landscape around her Water Mill home, painting it as it is “apprehended rather than analyzed.” Her loose brushwork, combined with the colorism of Fauve landscape painting, conveys a subjective perspective, and reconciles her interests in the inner vision of the Abstract Expressionists and the empirical observation of the outside world.
Jane Freilicher came to the East End in the 1950s and was friendly with painter Fairfield Porter, who lived in Southampton. She painted from a Water Mill studio for more than forty years.