Elaine de Kooning

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Elaine de Kooning
Born Elaine Marie Fried
(1918-03-12)March 12, 1918[1]
Brooklyn, New York
Died February 1, 1989(1989-02-01) (aged 70)
Southampton, New York
Nationality American
Known for Painting
Movement New York Figurative Expressionism, Abstract Expressionism

Elaine de Kooning (March 12, 1918[1] – February 1, 1989) was an Abstract Expressionist, Figurative Expressionist painter in the post-World War II era and editorial associate for Art News magazine.[2] On December 9, 1943, she married painter Willem de Kooning.

Early life and education[edit]

A painting to me is primarily a verb, not a noun, an event first and only secondarily an image.[3]

Elaine de Kooning

She was born Elaine Marie Catherine Fried in 1918 [1] in Brooklyn, New York. Her parents were Mary Ellen O'Brien and Charles Frank Fried. She was the oldest of four children. They lived in the Sheepshead Bay area of Brooklyn.[1][4] Her artistic endeavors were supported by her mother, who took her to museums and taught her to draw what she saw. After graduating from Erasmus Hall High School in Brooklyn, she briefly attended Hunter College in New York City. Then, in 1937, she attended the Leonardo da Vinci Art School and went on to study at the American Artists School, both in New York City.[5]


In 1985 she was elected into the National Academy of Design as an Associate member, and became a full Academician in 1988.


De Kooning died on February 1, 1989, in Southampton, New York,[4] a year after having a lung removed due to lung cancer.[1]

Selected solo exhibitions[edit]

Selected group exhibitions[edit]

Teaching positions[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e "Elaine de Kooning". TheArtStory.org. 
  2. ^ Edvard Lieber, "Willem de Kooning: Reflections in the Studio", p.10.
  3. ^ ‘’It is, No.4, Autumn, 1959.’’ Magazine for Abstract Art, Second Half Publishing Co., New York pp. 29, 30.
  4. ^ a b Glueck, Grace (February 2, 1989). "Elaine de Kooning, Artist and Teacher, Dies at 68". New York Times. 
  5. ^ American abstract and figurative expressionism : style is timely art is timeless : an illustrated survey with artists' statements, artwork and biographies. p. 75