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Nevelson Louise


1899, born September 23 in Kiev, Russia to Isaac Berliawsky and Minna Ziesel Smolerank. There were four children: Nathan, Louise, Anita and Lillian. 1905, the family moved to the United States and settled in Rockland, Maine where Isaac worked in construction and ran a lumber yard. 1920, married Charles Nevelson and moved to New York. 1922, son Myron (Mike) was born. 1929-30, studied at Art Students League in New York with Kenneth Hayes Miller. 1931, studied with Hans Hofmann in Munich. Worked as an extra in films in Berlin and Vienna. 1932, assistant to Diego Rivera. Studied modern dance with Ellen Kearns. 1935, exhibited in a group show of young sculptors arranged by the Secession Gallery at the Brooklyn Museum. 1937, as part of the Works Progress Administration, taught art at the Education Alliance School of Art in New York. 1941, First solo exhibition at the Nierendorf Gallery, New York. 1948, travelled to England, France, and Italy. 1949-50, worked at the Sculpture Centre, New York in terracotta, aluminium and bronze. Observed Atelier 17 in New York with Stanley William Hayter for a time. Made two trips to Mexico. 1953-55, worked at Atelier 17. Produced a series of  black wood landscape sculptures. 1956, Whitney Museum of American Art acquired Black Majesty. 1957, the Brooklyn Museum acquired First Personage. 1958, The Museum of Modern Art acquired Sky Cathedral. 1957-59, president of New York chapter of Artist’s Equity. Received grand prize for work in “Art U.S.A.”, exhibition at New York Coliseum. 1960, received Logan Award from The Art Institute of Chicago for work shown in “63rd  American Exhibition”. 1962, president of National Artist’s Equity. Participated in Conference of World Affairs, which included international leaders in the fields of science, government, arts, etc. First vice-president of Federation of Modern Painters and Sculptors. Member, National Association of Women Artists. Member Sculptor’s Guild. Sculpture included in United States Pavilion, XXXI Biennale Internazionale d’Arte, Venice. Whitney Museum of American Art acquires wall sculpture, Young Shadows. 1963, Fellowship in Tamarind Workshop, Los Angeles, where she completed an edition of 26 lithographs. Re-elected president of Artist’s Equity. 1965, participated in National Council on the Arts and Government in Washington D.C. Israel Museum in Jerusalem acquired Homage to 6,000,000. 1966, awarded honorary doctorate in fine arts from Western College for Women in Oxford, Ohio. 1967, major retrospective show at Whitney Museum of American Art, New York (March-April). Fellowship at the Tamarind Workshop, Los Angeles. 1969, commissioned by Princeton University to do first monumental Cor-ten steel sculpture. MacDowell Colony medal winner (September). Julliard School of Music, New York acquired wall sculpture, Nightsphere Light. 1970, 55’ wall sculpture commissioned by Temple Beth-El, Great Neck, New York. 1971, Brandeis University Creative Arts Award in Sculpture. Skowhegan Medal for Sculpture. 1972, gift of the city of New York of monumental Cor-ten steel sculpture Night Presence (Park Avenue between 91st and 92nd streets). Publication of Louise Nevelson, by Arnold B. Glimcher, published by Praeger Publishers, New York. 1973, commission of Cor-ten wall sculpture by Temple Israel, Boston. Commission of monumental sculpture by the city of Scottsdale, Arizona, with funds from the National Endowment for the Arts. Commission of monumental sculpture by the city of Binghamton, New York. Honorary degree, Smith College, Northampton, Massachusetts. 1975, commission of wood painted white environment for General Service Administration, Federal Courthouse, Philadelphia. Commission of monumental sculpture for Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge. Participated in two exhibitions organised by United States Information Agency, which travelled to Iran, India and Japan. 1977, installation of wood painted white environment at Saint Peter’s Lutheran Church, Citicorp Center, New York. Mrs. N’s Palace, an exhibition at the Pace Gallery, New York. Exhibition The Metal Sculptures, Neuberger Museum, State University of New York at Purchase. Commission of steel painted black monumental sculpture at Embarcadero Center, San Francisco. Received an honorary degree from Columbia University, New York. 1978, installation of seven major Cor-ten steel sculptures at  Louise Nevelson Plaza, between Liberty Street and Maiden Lane in New York City. Commission of monumental sculpture for The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey at the World Trade Center, New York. Received an honorary degree from Boston University, Massachusetts. 1979, commission of three major Cor-ten steel sculptures for Bendix Corporation of America, Headquarters Buildings, Southfield, Michigan. Awarded President’s Medal of the Municipal Art Society of New York. Elected a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters, New York. 1988, Died April 17 in her home in New York City.  



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