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Henry Kallem Abstract Oil Painting, 1947

Item Details

Henry Kallem (American, 1912 – 1985)
Untitled (abstract), 1947
Oil painting on board
Signed and dated to the lower left

Henry Kallem was born in Philadelphia. His father was Morris Kallem, a portrait painter, with whom he studied, and his brother was sculptor Herbert Kallem. Henry Kallem’s studio was in New York City, and he and his associates were a part of a group of modernists who called themselves the 28th Street group of modernists because they hung around the Henry and David Rothman Frame Shop on 28th Street. He was a member of the National Society of Painters in Casein and exhibited widely including at the Pennsylvania Academy, the 1939 New York World’s Fair, and the Pepsi Cola Exhibition of 1947 where he won first prize for his painting ‘Country Tenement’. This award caused consternation because of his abstract style, and ‘Life’ magazine, August 1948, ran an article referencing the award with the headline ‘Freak Painting Prizes’. Kallem was also a teacher in his studio and in a private school in Roslyn, New York, and at the New York City YWCA.

Kallem maintained a studio in New York and associated with a group of modernists who called themselves ‘The 28th Street Group of Modernists.’ Kallem and others of this group also spent much time in the summers painting in Provincetown and Monhegan Island. He received his art training at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts and the National Academy of Design in New York City. His work can be found in the Corcoran Galleries, Washington, as well as many private collections.

  • Item not examined outside of mounting


- paint loss throughout; cracking; warping to board; tearing to paper backing; wear to frame.


25.75" W x 19.5" H x 2.0" D

- measures frame.

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