NGA opens a collection of printmaking masters

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“A diver, paper pool”, by David Hockney, 1978, NGA.

TOMORROW (September 7) the National Gallery of Australia will open one of the glories of its collection—its post-War American art—in “Lichtenstein to Warhol: The Kenneth Tyler Collection”.

But today (September 6), NGA director Nick Mitzevich announced the establishment of The Kenneth E Tyler AO and Marabeth Cohen-Tyler Foundation, which supports the gallery’s ambitious publication and exhibition program showcasing works from the collection of master printer Kenneth Tyler. It also supports emerging curatorial staff, as well as research and digital access to the collection.

“Reflections on Crash”, by Roy Lichtenstein, 1990, NGA, © Estate of Roy Lichtenstein/Copyright Agency

Drawing on what is believed to be the most significant corpus outside the US, “Lichtenstein to Warhol” looks back to the heyday of America’s print-making renaissance, showcasing some of the colossal artistic identities of the period, including Anni and Josef Albers, Helen Frankenthaler, Jasper Johns, Roy Lichtenstein, Joan Mitchell, Robert Rauschenberg, Andy Warhol, Claes Oldenburg, Nancy Graves and David Hockney.

NGA director Nick Mitzevich praised the foresight of inaugural director James Mollison, who had made the first acquisition from Tyler in 1973, as well as significant subsequent purchases, and Tyler’s generous gifts to the gallery, where he has been a familiar figure.

“Kenneth Tyler wasn’t bound by convention. He offered these artists – some of the most talented of the era – almost limitless opportunities for creativity and experimentation at his workshop. His vision helped re-establish print-making as a leading form of visual art,” he said.

Curator and head of international art Jane Kinsman said: “Working with Ken was an adventure for many artists and had a lasting impact on their career.”

“Lichtenstein to Warhol: The Kenneth Tyler Collection”, National Gallery of Australia, from September 7 to March 9. Entry is free.

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