© Henrik Kam
Exhibition

Approaching American Abstraction

Ongoing

Floor 4

This exhibition of selected American artists explores the diverse approaches to abstraction developed since 1950, from the forceful brushwork of Lee Krasner to the contemplative canvases and reliefs of Ellsworth Kelly and the enigmatic wood forms of Martin Puryear. The variety of materials and techniques included in this presentation testifies to abstraction’s enduring potential as a form of artistic expression.

Approaching American Abstraction is the result of an innovative partnership established in 2009 between the Doris and Donald Fisher Collection and the San Francisco Museum of Museum Art. The galleries showcase the shared strengths and complementary nature of our holdings through presentations that blend artworks from the Fishers with pieces from the museum’s collection and occasionally other lenders.

Entry to this exhibition is included with general admission. Tickets are available now; advance online purchase is highly recommended.

Header image: © Henrik Kam

Exhibition Preview

  • Three-panel abstract painting with colorful lines over an off-white background

    Joan Mitchell, Bracket, 1989; The Doris and Donald Fisher Collection at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; © Estate of Joan Mitchell; photo: Ian Reeves

  • Square canvas composed of fourteen solid-colored vertical bands ranging the color spectrum

    Ellsworth Kelly, Spectrum I, 1953; San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the Doris and Donald Fisher Collection at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and promised gift of Helen and Charles Schwab; © Ellsworth Kelly; photo: Ben Blackwell

  • Artwork image, Lee Krasner, Polar Stampede

    Lee Krasner, Polar Stampede, 1960; The Doris and Donald Fisher Collection at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; © Pollock-Krasner Foundation / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York; photo: Ian Reeves

  • Overlapping, semi-transparent, radiating lines of colorful paint

    Morris Louis, Untitled, 1959-60; the Doris and Donald Fisher Collection at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; © Estate of Morris Louis; photo: Katherine Du Tiel

  • Forest green canvas painted with scrawling, dripping, white loops

    Cy Twombly, Note I, from the series III Notes from Salalah, 2005–7; The Doris and Donald Fisher Collection at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; © Cy Twombly Foundation; photo: Ian Reeves

  • Installation view, ​Christopher Wilmarth, Days on Blue

    Christopher Wilmarth, Days on Blue, 1974–77; The Doris and Donald Fisher Collection at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; © Estate of Christopher Wilmarth; photo: Katherine Du Tiel

  • Artwork image, Brice Marden, The Sisters

    Brice Marden, The Sisters, 1991–93; The Doris and Donald Fisher Collection at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; © Brice Marden / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York; photo: courtesy Matthew Marks Gallery, New York

  • A subtle grid of mostly horizontal blue and brown lines on a yellowish background

    Agnes Martin, Falling Blue, 1963; collection SFMOMA, gift of Mr. and Mrs. Moses Lasky; © Estate of Agnes Martin / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York; photo: Don Myer




Related Publication

Published in conjunction with the museum’s reopening, this book highlights key works from the Doris and Donald Fisher Collection, and includes texts by Neal Benezra and Gary Garrels.