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Joyce Kozloff

(b. 1942)


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(1942– )

American painter, one of the leading figures of the Pattern and Decoration movement. She was born in Somerville, New Jersey, and studied at Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, and Columbia University, New York, where she took an MFA degree in 1967. In the same year she married the critic MaxKozloff (1933– ), whose publications include Renderings: Critical Essays on a Century of Modern Art (1970); also in 1967 she visited Spain, where she became fascinated with the elaborate patterns of Islamic art. This was one of the sources that led her to a work in a style that she calls ‘deliberately and even ostentatiously decorative. It comes out of a love of objects which are visually rich and sensuous. I found that in the art of other cultures there is that careful and pleasurable attention to detail which have become taboo in recent American art, and so I went to these other sources for inspiration. The paintings have a bold, geometrical structure, but they simultaneously have an intricate texture of lines and strokes on the surface, which draw the viewer up close to the work. I hope, with these paintings, to begin breaking down the hierarchies between the high and the decorative arts—and between primitive and sophisticated cultures.’ Kozloff's work has included not only paintings, but also a number of large tile decorations, made between 1979 and 1984, for subway and train stations in Buffalo, Cambridge (Massachusetts), Philadelphia, and Wilmington, and for the international terminal of San Francisco airport.

Subjects: Art.


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