This is a scarce-to-rare original lithograph by the highly important Colorado modernist artist VANCE HALL KIRKLAND (1904-1981). The work measures 10 3/4" by 13 1/2" (19" by 21 1/2" framed), is signed in pencil at lower right, titled at lower left "Adam and Eve", and numbered 2/85 and dated there 1940. The print is executed in a modern style by the then 36 year old artist. Kirkland is sometimes called the father of modern Colorado painting, or the "pre-eminent Colorado artist". He is today associated with bringing modernism to Denver and Colorado art---so much so that the Kirkland Museum in Denver is a part of his legacy. Born in Ohio, Kirkland studied with Henry Keller and was in Denver in his twenties, already rebelling against more traditional art. During this period he was producing murals on commission in public buildings and private homes. Much of his early work, most of it in watercolor, was in the WPA style, though with a modernist twist. As time went on he went more into non-objective painting, and eventually into a colorful, uniquely surrealist style, followed finally by abstract expressionism and his "dot paintings". Becoming nationally known, he was exhibiting at the Art Institute of Chicago, and the Museum of Modern Art in New York. Kirkland was at the center of Denver's social and cultural avant-garde, and he was the director of the School of Art at the University of Denver for many years; in the 30's and 40's he even ran his own school of art, known as the Kirkland School of Art. I have not been able to locate other examples of his lithography, after a casual search, and do not recall ever seeing another print offered to me, so I feel comfortable in saying that his graphic work is scarce at the very least. The work is clean, with just some even toning of the paper from oxidation, and a slight ripple is present. The glass will need to be replaced since it is cracked at lower right corner. See the net for images of Kirkland's abstract and surrealist works. SEE HUNDREDS OF OTHER PAINTINGS, PRINTS AND DRAWINGS NOW IN MY SHOP.
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