Betty Parsons – Alison Jacques, London

Alison Jacques presents our second solo exhibition of American artist Betty Parsons (1900-82). This exhibition showcases over thirty years of Parsons’ practice, covering the period from 1950 until 1981. The show includes paintings on canvas and paper, as well as sculpture.

Betty Parsons is one of the most influential and dynamic figures of the American avant-garde.
In the last decade, her contribution to post-war abstraction through her own artistic practice has been internationally acknowledged and understood.

This exhibition offers a deeper understanding of Parsons’ art which, during her lifetime, was often overshadowed by the pioneering New York gallery she opened in 1946. Despite the great success of her gallery, Parsons possessed an unwavering commitment to her own artistic practice. ‘When I’m not at the gallery, my own art is my relaxation’, she once said. ‘That’s my greatest joy’.

In her lifetime, as a female artist, Parsons not only found it hard to supersede her powerful status as a gallerist, but also to be accepted within a male dominated art world. Her American retrospective at Montclair Art Museum in 1974, which followed the first international survey of Parsons work at the Whitechapel Gallery in 1968, was a revelation for many. It served to change the perspective of Parsons as gallerist, to a celebration of her as an artist in her own right. Parson once said: ‘I would give up my gallery in a second if the world would accept me as an artist’ – this lifetime desire has now been cemented and continues to grow.

Lisbeth Thalberg
Lisbeth Thalberg
Journalist and artist (photographer). Editor of the art section at MCM. Contact: art (@) martincid (.) com
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