Princeton University Art Museum Receives Major Gift and Grant from Helen Frankenthaler Foundation

Distributed December 18, 2018

Princeton chosen as part of Foundation’s inauguration of the Frankenthaler Prints Initiative for university-affiliated museums

PRINCETON, N.J. – Ten prints, in a variety of media, and several related trial proofs by distinguished American abstract artist Helen Frankenthaler (1928-2011) will be donated to the Princeton University Art Museum by the Helen Frankenthaler Foundation. In addition, the Foundation has awarded the museum $25,000 to develop a project for the study, presentation and interpretation of the prints. Princeton is one of 10 U.S. university museums to be selected by the foundation to launch the Frankenthaler Prints Initiative.

 “The museum is honored to be included in the first cohort of beneficiaries of this inspiring educational initiative by the Helen Frankenthaler Foundation,” said James Steward, Nancy A. Nasher–David J. Haemisegger, Class of 1976, director. “Helen Frankenthaler’s printmaking is essential to her legacy, and this gift dramatically enhances our ability to engage with the work of one of the greatest artists of the 20th century, for the benefit of our students and all our visitors.”

Ruth Fine, a Frankenthaler scholar and advisor to the Foundation, selected the prints gifted to the museums.

The Frankenthaler Prints Initiative is one of two new multiyear programs recently announced by the Helen Frankenthaler Foundation to fund Frankenthaler studies at the university level. The second is the Frankenthaler Scholarships, which includes annual endowment gifts to four institutions to create scholarships for graduate students in painting and art history. 

An important and influential postwar artist, Helen Frankenthaler is known for her innovative Abstract Expressionist style and her subsequent contribution to the development of Color Field painting. Her work can be found in leading museums and collections worldwide. Frankenthaler attended Bennington College and lectured frequently at art schools and universities throughout her six-decade career. 


About the Helen Frankenthaler Foundation

The Helen Frankenthaler Foundation was established and endowed by the artist during her lifetime and became active in 2013, on the closing of the artist’s estate. The Foundation supports the artist’s legacy through a variety of initiatives, including encouraging and facilitating significant exhibitions of Frankenthaler’s work, grantmaking and the publishing of a catalogue raisonné. Its holdings include an extensive selection of

Frankenthaler’s work in a variety of mediums, her collection of works by other artists and original papers and materials pertaining to her life and work.

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About the Princeton University Art Museum

With a collecting history that extends back to 1755, the Princeton University Art Museum is one of the leading university art museums in the country, with collections that have grown to include over 100,000 works of art ranging from ancient to contemporary art and spanning the globe.

Committed to advancing Princeton’s teaching and research missions, the Art Museum also serves as a gateway to the University for visitors from around the world. Intimate in scale yet expansive in scope, the Museum offers a respite from the rush of daily life, a revitalizing experience of extraordinary works of art and an opportunity to delve deeply into the study of art and culture.

The Princeton University Art Museum is located at the heart of the Princeton campus, a short walk from the shops and restaurants of Nassau Street. Admission is free. Museum hours are Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Thursday 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.; and Sunday 12 to 5 p.m. The Museum is closed Mondays and major holidays.

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