Ryman, Robert Tracy,
1930–2019, American painter, b. Nashville, Tenn. While working (1953–60) as a guard at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City he was immersed in modern and contemporary works of art and became friends with such fellow workers and future minimalists as Dan Flavin
and Sol LeWitt
. In the mid-1950s he began to experiment with painting, at first working with color. He soon turned to the austere, largely monochromatic work to which he devoted his artistic career: square, most often white-on-white paintings, differentiated by their various shades, surface textures, and types of paint, by the materials the paint is applied to, such as canvas, wood, fiberglass, aluminum, cardboard, copper, or steel, by their sizes, and by how they are affixed to the wall.
See museum catalog by V. Sretenović (2010); study by S. P. Hudson (2009).
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.
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