Mary Frank

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Mary Frank
Born Mary Lockspeiser
London, England
Nationality English
Known for Painting, Printmaking, Sculpture
Spouse(s) Robert Frank (m. 1950–69)
Untitled (Prone Man, Two Trees) by Mary Frank

Mary Frank (née Mary Lockspeiser; born 4 February 1933) is an English visual artist known primarily as a sculptor, painter, printmaker, draftswoman, and illustrator.


Frank was born in London, the only child of Eleanore Lockspeiser (1909–1986), an American painter, and Edward Lockspeiser (1905–1973), English musicologist and art critic. During World War II, Mary was sent to live in Brooklyn, New York, with her maternal grandparents, Gregory and Eugenie Weinstein. She studied modern dance with Martha Graham from 1945 to 1950 and was admitted to the High School of Music & Art in New York in 1947. In 1949 she transferred to the Professional Children's School, where she majored in dance. While in high school, she met Robert Frank, a Swiss photographer, whom she married in 1950. About this time she studied wood carving at Alfred van Loen's studio. She also studied drawing with Max Beckmann at the Brooklyn Museum Art School in New York and briefly with Hans Hofmann in 1951 and 1954 at Hofmann's Eighth Street School.

By this time she had two children: Pablo (named after Picasso), born February 7, 1951, and Andrea, born April 21, 1954. After her husband, Robert Frank, gained a Guggenheim Fellowship in 1955 she travelled with him and the children the following two years across the United States.[1]

Frank first exhibited her drawings in 1958 at the Poindexter Gallery in New York City. In 1969 Frank began her relationship with the Zabriskie Gallery in New York. Inspired by the sculpture and pottery of Margaret Ponce Israel, she began working in clay. She divorced Robert Frank in the same year. In 1973 she purchased a summer home in Lake Hill, New York, and built her first kiln.

On December 28, 1974, her 20-year-old daughter, Andrea, was killed in a plane crash in the Guatemalan jungle. About a year later her son Pablo developed Hodgkin's lymphoma and died on November 11, 1994, in Pennsylvania. Frank currently lives and works in Lake Hill and New York City. Since 1995, she has been married to Leo Treltler, a pianist and music scholar.[2]

Mary Frank's career spans five decades. She is largely self-taught and never had any formal training as a sculptor. She was elected to the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters in 1984, the recipient of numerous awards and honors including two Guggenheim Foundation Fellowship Awards in 1973 and 1983, the Lee Krasner Award of the Pollock-Krasner Foundation in 1993 and the Joan Mitchell Grant Award in 1995. In 1990 she was elected into the National Academy of Design as an Associate member, and became a full Academician in 1994.

Currently she has works included in the permanent collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the National Museum of American Art at the Smithsonian Institution, the Library of Congress, the Art Institute of Chicago, the Museum of Art at Yale University and the Jewish Museum.

She has also produced many paintings and works in various other media, especially printmaking. Her works are in New York's Whitney Museum, Boston's Museum of Fine Arts, the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, and many others.

DC Moore Gallery represents Frank. The gallery first exhibited her works in January 2008.[3] Frank is also represented by Elena Zang Gallery in Hurley (Woodstock) New York.


See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Mary Frank | Jewish Women's Archive". Retrieved 2016-03-05. 
  2. ^ Meeker, Carlene (1 March 2009). "MARY FRANK". Jewish Women's Archive. Retrieved 7 March 2014. 
  3. ^ "DC Moore Gallery, artist page". Retrieved 1 February 2013. 


External links[edit]