Home Page PublicationsCollectionsChronologyConey IslandReminiscenceLisa Kleinholz
"These colorful works are inherently a celebration of life."
Curtis L. Carter

"His gaiety has a subtly disquieting undertone, as if the artist understood all too well the fragile and transitory nature of his subject matter... When we add to this apparently unworldly approach to his art the Byzantine splendor of his color, we can see that he springs from the same roots as Chagall and Burliuk."

Jacob Kainen

"Adjacent objects frequently have strikingly different hues which shock the observer into acknowledging the boundaries between human and material existence."

Gary Grossman
  Frank Kleinholz
American Modernist painter, 1901-1987.

Born in Brooklyn, New York, Kleinholz graduated Fordham Law School in 1923. In the 1930s, he began studying painting under Yasuo Kuniyoshi and Sol Wilson. He quickly rose to prominence with the inclusion of Abstractionists in the Carnegie Institute exhibition of 1941. The following year Back Street won a purchase prize by the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Chronology

His strongest influences were American Social Realists Reginald Marsh and Philip Evergood, the German Expressionists George Grosz and Kathe Kollewitz, the Mexican muralists Rivera, Orozco, and Siqueiros, and the early 20th century Paris Modernists.

Described by Newsweek as a "Brooklyn-born Gauguin," Kleinholz focused on urban life in New York, Brooklyn and Coney Island, as well as intimate scenes of parents and children, flowers and birds, and sunbathers. His political works include antiwar paintings, ironic statements such as Man and Superman, and depictions of peace demonstrations.

His style is marked by vivid color, energetic brushwork, angular geometry, forceful lines, shortened perspective, and elements of dream and fantasy. These effects combine to convey intense emotion and a complex psychological subtext. Underlying themes contrast alienation and striving, despair and caring, social criticism and exuberant individualism.

© 2003-07 by Lisa Kleinholz. Web site by interbridge.