José Guerrero (Spanish/American, 1914-1992)
Signed "Jose Guerrero" l.l., dedicated "...ON HIS DAY OF BIRTH NOVEMBER 18, 1961/
FROM HIS MOTHER AND FATHER." on the reverse.
Oil and mixed media on canvas, 40 x 44 in. (101.6 x 111.7 cm),framed.
Condition: Craquelure, lifting, alligatoring, canvas deformations, surface grime.
Provenance: Purchased from the artist, by family descent to a private New England collection.
N.B. We wish to thank the Centro Jose Guerrero for their assistance with cataloguing the lot, and the work will be included in their forthcoming digital catalogue raisonne.
Spanish-born José Guerrero first arrived in New York in 1950 with his American wife, Roxane Whittier Pollock. The couple settled in Greenwich Village (with Guerrero setting up a studio in the adjacent SoHo District),but also passed summers at a rental house on Martha's Vineyard. Guerrero remained in New York for the next eight years, where on the introduction of his dealer Karl Bucholz, he was introduced to Betty Parsons. Through Parsons' circle, Guerrero met fellow abstract expressionist artists Franz Kline, Mark Rothko, and Robert Motherwell. (1) Guerrero's work of the 1950s through mid-1960s is characterized by his use of industrial materials, including silicate, to call attention to the materiality of the two-dimensional surface.
There is a very small (about 1/8 in. or 0.3 cm) tear in the u.l. corner, located 1-5/8 inches down from the top and 8 inches in from the left side. There is canvas rippling for about 15 inches along the center left edge and a small canvas deformation left center. An area of lifting paint, about 1 inch long and 1/2 inch wide, is located on the left side, 3 inches in from the left and 15 inches up from the bottom edge. Patches of craquelure with alligatoring occur across the middle of the canvas in areas of higher impasto, and there is craquelure in the center top of the canvas.