Marsden Hartley at Louisiana

America’s first great modern painter of the 20th century


From September 19, 2019 until January 19, 2020

This autumn Louisiana Museum of Modern Art presents the biggest exhibition so far in Europe of the American painter Marsden Hartley, an important figure in American art history. It is the first time in 60 years that a retrospective exhibition of the artist can be seen on European soil. The works in the exhibition have been borrowed from the greatest American museums and private collections. The exhibition is thus a large-scale, ambi­tious venture for Louisiana.

Hailed as "America’s first great modern painter of the 20th century" and "one of the most intriguing art historical subjects of all time", Marsden Hartley remains relatively unknow to a European audience. This Louisiana presentation marks the first major retrospective exhibition of his work in Europe in over 60 years.

The work of the American painter and poet Marsden Hartley (1877-1943) can be regarded as a bridge between European and American modernism. Hartley lived much of his life nomadically between Europe and the USA, and his travels produced a number of profoundly original groups of works from 1906 until 1943. Among these we can count a series of abstract paintings created with a point of departure in military symbols from the horrors of the First World War; desolate, almost surreal landscapes from New Mexico; feminized figure paintings of muscular working men.