American Abstract Expressionist Richard Warren Pousette-Dart was born into a life of art. His father Nathaniel Jermund Pousette-Dart was a painter and writer and his mother Flora Pousette-Dart was a poet and musician. By the age of eight Richard Pousette-Dart had already begun to paint and draw. As a child his parents enrolled him the private Scarborough Day School in New York and later studied briefly at the Bard College following high school.
Influenced by artist Henri Gaudier-Brzeska, Pousette-Dart initially concentrated on sculpting with stone, bronze and brass. By the 1930’s, he began to develop a deep interest in African, Oceanic and Native American art both formally and spiritually. He once stated “I strive to express the spiritual nature of the Universe. Painting for me is a dynamic balance and wholeness of life; it is mysterious and transcending, yet solid and real.”
Richard Pousette-Dart held his first solo exhibition in 1941 at the Artists’ Gallery in New York. During that same year the Museum of Modern Art purchased his oil painting Desert completed in 1940. Shortly thereafter Pousette-Dart set up a studio in Manhattan, New York. During the 1940’s and 1950’s he experimented with various artistic mediums and art forms. His first retrospective was held at the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York in 1963. By the time of his death in 1992 he had gained worldwide recognition. Richard Pousette-Dart’s work now appears in numerous galleries and collections including the Museum of Modern Art, New York; the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles; the Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven, Connecticut; the Tel Aviv Museum of Art, Israel; and the Vatican Museum, Rome, Italy.