Audrey Flack seems as energetic at 85 as she must have been in her early days as an artist who has evidently never let being a woman hold her back, from her start in the fifties when she led in painting photorealism and the MOMA began its collection with one of her works in 1966, when she associated with Willem De Kooning, Jackson Pollock and other drunken bad boys of abstract expressionism, whom she now views as similar to Rodin the sculptor in subjecting female artists to subordination and inconsiderate behavior which they mistakenly thought was part and parcel of great talent, but Flack herself never veered from choosing a path dictated by her own inner creative needs, during the sixties abandoning paint and picking up clay and locking her studio door for ten years before exhibiting her own sculpture along 19 Century lines though definitely not following Rodin, who she says she is still mad at after finding out how much he borrowed from the talent of Camille Claudel, his young mistress and assistant whose life was ruined by the ten year old affair, whose work she first admired at the Rodin Museum in the seventies and only then realized was by a woman, who helped inspire her subsequent work which in terms of realistic beauty may have peaked in her graceful 2,000-pound bronze statue of a woman called “Veritas et Justitia,” or Truth and Justice, now colloquially known as Lady Justice, outside the courthouse in Tampa, which supplicants heading for an appearance in front of a judge apparently rub with a prayer, since one of its ten year old toe has largely vanished, which together with the consistently non-abstract character of the direction of her work and the strength of her feminist objections to the oppression of female artists made one wonder whether she was exhibiting a reliable tendency of women artists to reclaim the concrete from the wave of abstract art which has dominated the West in recent decades, as a kind of reversal of the Alzheimers of male art toward representational work, which she allowed was an interesting question worth exploring, though without disparaging male achievement.
Molly Barnes will interview painter, sculptor, banjo player, and songwriter Audrey Flack who, on February 18, 2017, received a Lifetime Achievement Award from The Women’s Caucus for Art.
Audrey Flack is a pioneer of Photorealism and a nationally recognized painter and sculptor. The first women artists to be listed in Janson’s History of Art were Audrey Flack and Mary Cassatt. Flack’s work is in the collections of major museums around the world, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Museum of Modern Art, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, Whitney Museum of American Art, and the National Museum of Art in Australia.
Flack was the first photorealist painter to have work purchased by the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA). Her public sculpture has been monumental and spearheading a return to representational public art. Her mission is to present women not as mere sex objects gazing up at a general on a horse, but as strong, intelligent, purposeful individuals with a powerful physiognomy and inner and outer beauty.
Throughout her career, Flack’s work has been featured in numerous traveling museum exhibitions, includingTwenty-two Realists (1972) at the Whitney Museum of American Art, Super Realism (1975-76) at the Baltimore Museum of Art, American Painting of the Seventies (1979) at the Albright-Knox Gallery, (Buffalo),Contemporary American Realism (1981-83) at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts (Philadelphia),Toyama Now, 1981 at the Museum of Modern Art (Tokyo), and Making Their Mark: Women Artists Move into the Mainstream (1989) which traveled to the Cincinnati Art Museum, the New Orleans Museum of Art, the Denver Art Museum and the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts.
Flack has also held numerous solo exhibitions including at the Louis K. Meisel Gallery, the Gary Snyder Gallery (New York) and Hollis Taggart Galleries among others.
Flack is also noted for her musical group, The History of Art String Band.
Eldridge & Co. interview with Audrey Flack:
Eldridge & Co. – Audrey Flack-Painter, Sculptor – CUNY TV
Artist Audrey Flack and Ronnie Eldridge talk about their