Getty Conservation Institute
Clyfford Still: The Artist’s Materials
This groundbreaking book provides the first detailed account of the materials and techniques of perhaps the most radical—and until now, least studied—major American Abstract Expressionist.
Among the most radical of the great American Abstract Expressionist painters, Clyfford Still has also long been among the least studied. Still severed ties with the commercial art world in the early 1950s, and his estate at the time of his death in 1980 comprised some 3,125 artworks—including more than 800 paintings—that were all but unknown to the art world. Susan F. Lake and Barbara A. Ramsay were granted access to this collection by the estate and by the Clyfford Still Museum in Denver, which houses this immense corpus today.
This volume, based on the authors’ materials research and enriched by their unprecedented access to Still’s artworks, paints, correspondence, studio records, and personal library, provides the first detailed account of his materials, working methods, and techniques. Initial chapters provide an engaging and erudite overview of the artist's life. Subsequent chapters trace the development of his visionary style, offer in-depth materials analysis of selected works from each decade of his career, and suggest new approaches to the care and conservation of his paintings. There is also a series of technical appendices as well as a full bibliography.