Nora Speyer, Figure

Oil on canvas
Credit Line
Gift of the artist, 2012
49 x 30 in.

The most exciting place to me is where I can communicate with the greatest number of artists. I can't live without some artists around. I'm not saying artists are likable. They can be very objectionable, but they are still my world.

- Nora Speyer

Here bravura brushstrokes, energetic lines, and broad areas of flat, vivid color coalesce to create an impressionistic reading of a figure in an interior. Painterly and expressive in her approach, Speyer creates tension between her "real” and imagined subjects. Spatial ambiguity results from her placement of the figure's crossed legs in the foreground and the head and torso in a more distant background space.

Born in Pittsburgh, Speyer enrolled at Temple University's Tyler School of Art when she was sixteen. It was there she became roommates with Lillian Lent and Doris Staffel. In 1943, Speyer married artist Sideo Fromboluti and the couple moved to New York, where they often saw Staffel and her husband, Rudolf. Speyer knew and exhibited with many of the Abstract Expressionists, yet her own work always veered more toward the representational -always drawn and painted from figures, still life, and landscape.

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