When Joan Mitchell settled in New York in 1950, she abandoned representation entirely and turned to painting abstractions, creating works that reflect the people, places, and experiences that made up her life. The Albright-Knox’s George Went Swimming at Barnes Hole, but It Got Too Cold, 1957, refers to her poodle, George, whom she loved deeply, and often went swimming with. It was first shown at the Albright-Knox in Contemporary Art: Acquisitions 1957–1958 just a year after it was created.
Louise Nevelson studied with Hans Hofmann and worked as a mural assistant to Diego Rivera. During the 1950s, she developed her wood constructions, largely composed of found objects, the first of which were painted matte black, followed by a series in metallic gold paint, and another in white. She also made sculptures in metal and from Plexiglas. The Albright-Knox owns 23 works by Nevelson, including Royal Game I, 1961, which was most recently on view in 2016’s For the Love of Things: Still Life.
The Albright-Knox owns seven of Anne Truitt’s signature painted wood columns. In 1977, Truitt stated that her ultimate goal was to achieve “color in three dimensions, color set free, to a point where, theoretically, the support should dissolve into pure color.” The museum acquired Truitt’s Sentinel, 1978, in 1980, and six more sculptures in 2008 as part of the Panza Collection. The works were on view in 2007–2008’s The Panza Collection: An Experience of Color and Light and, more recently, in 2016’s Defining Sculpture.