Art Term

Washington Color School

The Washinton Color School was an art movement founded by Morris Louis and Kenneth Noland that emerged in the late 1950s in Washington DC and flourished in the 1960s, promoting a form of abstract art developed from colour field painting

Kenneth Noland, ‘Drought’ 1962
Kenneth Noland
Drought 1962
Tate
© The estate of Kenneth Noland /VAGA, New York/DACS, London 2019

The Washington Color School was founded in response to the abstract expressionism of the New York school. An exhibition of their paintings in 1965 at the Washington Gallery of Modern Art cemented their reputation for creating paintings that disregarded structure for colour. Many of the artists used acrylic paint on raw canvas, which led to the description hard edge painting.

Artists associated with Washington color school include Sam Gilliam, Morris Louis, Kenneth Noland, and Alma Thomas.

Related terms and concepts

Selected artists in the collection

Selected artworks in the collection

Kenneth Noland Gift

1961–2

Morris Louis Phi

1960–1

Morris Louis VAV

1960

You might like

Art World, Network and Other Alloway Keywords

Courtney J. Martin

The British critic Lawrence Alloway (1926–1990) generated a new vocabulary for American art of the 1960s and 1970s. This ...

Conservation Concerns for Acrylic Emulsion Paints: A Literature Review

Elizabeth Jablonski , Tom Learner , James Hayes and Mark Golden

Acrylic emulsion paints have been widely used by artists since their development in the late 1950s. This paper reviews the ...

Mapping the Field: Lawrence Alloway’s Art Criticism-as-Information

Stephen Moonie

Lawrence Alloway claimed that the art critic should avoid explicit value judgements and instead provide information. This paper historicises Alloway ...