Friday, February 1, 2013
An Alex Katz aquatint print of a swimmer hangs in our dining room. My husband's grandmother had it for years; she gave it to us toward the end of her life. I think of her when I look at it—she loved art (and loved to talk about art). I feel lucky to have inherited it; it fits the style of our house perfectly. It anchors its space. I like to imagine that my kids could focus on its bold black-and-white image when they were tiny and couldn't see color yet.
Katz's prints are indeed bold and striking—and prints are normally what I'm drawn to, and what I write about here—but I like his paintings even more. His clean, stylized portraits absolutely capture their subjects (pretty ladies, often with hats or scarves; serious-looking men; pretty rooms) with pure lines and bright but subtle color. And he's still going at 85.