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clyfford still | museum
Pastel on paper sketch of people on the Coleville Reservation
Clyfford Still, PP-486, 1936 (detail). Pastel on paper, 9 x 12 in.
(22.9 x 30.5 cm) © City and County of Denver

Clyfford Still: The Colville Reservation and Beyond, 1934-1939

May 8 – Sep 13, 2015

Experience an early chapter in Clyfford Still’s groundbreaking path towards Abstract Expressionism. This exhibition and its catalogue of new scholarship explore how Still’s time with indigenous people of northeastern Washington State contributed to a tragic sensibility realized later in his career. The work comes from Still’s years as a faculty member at Washington State College (WSC), when he co-founded State College Summer Art Colony on Washington’s Colville Reservation.

This seven-minute video featuring Patricia Failing and Michael Holloman was created for the exhibition and is now available on youtube.

Approximately thirty original works on paper and eight oil-on-canvas compositions by Clyfford Still comprise the exhibition, along with sketch-oriented materials, related photographs, and examples of the artist’s self-described “interpretive studies” executed in the middle and late 1930s in Pullman, Washington. Subject matter ranges from carefully observed portraits of tribal members to dramatic, semi-abstract paintings of human figures. Dozens of the works in this exhibition are being shown publicly for the first time.

Clyfford Still: The Colville Reservation and Beyond, 1934-1939 is curated by Patricia Failing, Professor Emerita, Division of Art History, University of Washington, Seattle. Beginning May 8, the exhibition catalogue is available for purchase at the Museum and shop.clyffordstillmuseum.org, and a brief video feature on the exhibition’s content is also available to guests in the Museum’s Boettcher Foundation Education Gallery.