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Saturday, April 9, 2011

Hard-Edge style

First called "Abstract Classicist" by art critic Jules Langsner and art professor Peter Selz when first exhibited in 1959, this style of painting soon became known as Hard-Edge for its abrupt transitions between color areas, and it looked right at home in the California houses designed by Richard Neutra and other well-known architects of the day. These paintings were considered "the essence of cool," and were on the walls of the most fashionable people of the mid-century era.

Popular Hard-Edge painters of the 1950s and 1960s were John McLaughlin, Lorser Feitelson and his wife Helen Lundeberg, Karl Benjamin and Frederick Hammersly. Imagine Miles Davis or Dave Brubeck tunes wafting through the rooms where these or similar paintings hung. You can almost hear the sound of ice in the cocktail glasses too.

Uploaded by 8BallsEmperor on Oct 11, 2008

Untitled, c. 1946-1949, by John McLaughlin
Untitled, 1952, by John McLaughlin
Untitled, 1964, by Lorser Feitelson
Dichotomic Organization, 1959, by Lorser Feitelson
Interior with Painting, 1960, by Helen Lundesberg
Shadow of the Bridge I, 1962, by Helen Lundesberg
Chino Hills, 1959, by Karl Benjamin
Black Pillars, 1957, by Karl Benjamin
Up Within, c. 1957-1958, by Frederick Hammersly
Lesson One, 1965, by Frederick Hammersly


  1. Oh I love the ones called Chino Hills and Black Pillars!!

    Thanks sooo much for the inspiration, I'm collecting images of mid-century artworks to paint myself, for my own walls! Love them!

  2. @1950sarh: I love those two as well. I also really like the Helen Lundesberg pieces.

  3. there is something very special about the one with a peek into interior..mysterious :)

  4. Such inspiring work! You never cease to amaze me with your research! I wanted you to know I sent a "stylish blogger" award your way!