Barnett Newman was born in New York City on Jan. 29, 1905. Between 1922 and 1926 he studied with Duncan Smith, John Sloan, and William von Schlegell at the Art Students League and at the same time attended the City College of New York, where he received a bachelor of arts degree in 1927. He did graduate work at Cornell University. In 1936 he married Annalee Greenhouse, and in 1948 he and William Baziotes, Robert Motherwell, and Mark Rothko founded a school of art in New York called “Subjects of the Artist.” Throughout his life Newman traveled extensively in the United States, Canada, and Europe. He also taught occasionally: at the University of Saskatchewan in 1959 and at the University of Pennsylvania in 1962-1964. He died in New York City on July 3, 1970.
During most of his career Newman shunned one-man exhibitions, preferring to have his work seen by a small group of friends, patrons, and fellow artists. His list of one-man shows is therefore limited to five. By the 1960s Newman’s stature in the field of contemporary painting became increasingly apparent to a wider audience. His work was included in a number of national and international group shows, including the Seattle World’s Fair (1962), the São Paulo Bienal (1965), and the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s “New York Painting and Sculpture, 1940 to 1970″ (1969-1970).