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Paul Jenkins

"A painting must contain a universe, material and spiritual, known and unknown."

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Notes of biography

Paul Jenkins is born in 1923 in Kansas City in the Missouri (United States). When he is a teenager, he works in a ceramic factory and enjoys learning a lot about colors. Paul Jenkins settles down in New York in 1948, and joins the Art Students League; there, Yasuo Kuniyoshi and Morris Kantor are his influential professors. At first associated to the abstract expressionism, his work takes later a metaphysical dimension which stays dominant today.
Little by little, the act to paint becomes for the artist an intuitive and almost mystic process. During his studies in New York, Jenkins is close to Jackson Pollock and Mark Rothko. He likes the esoteric and occult philosophy of Gurdjieff. In 1951, he paints his first work with the technique of "dripping". He makes a journey (1951) in Europe, visits Spain, Italy and settles down, in 1953, in Paris. He makes friends with Dubuffet, Tobey, Pierre Restany and Michel Tapié.
His first personal exhibition is organized in Paris in 1954. During a long time, Jenkins shares his work between his two studios, in Paris and New York.
The energy characterizes his art. His paintings fills the eye of lightly and thick layers of colors. His paintings gather opaqueness and transparency. On the surface of his canvases, the artist gives his own definitions of the colour, the light and the space. Paul Jenkins likes respecting the purity of colours. His work is in the biggest museums of the world. He creates monumental decorations for the Opera of Paris. If his technique is unorthodox, we can also qualify him as a traditional artist. He paints with acrylic on canvases or papers. At the end of the 80s, Jenkins receives numerous state commissions throughout the world; During the 80’s he creates an important set of lithographs.
Paul Jenkins lives alternately in Paris and in New York and gets exhibitions very often.
Paul Jenkins died in 2012.

Artists on display

The art and the artists display: proclamations, galleries, museums, personal or collective exhibitions. On walls or in shop windows, wise or rebels, posters warn, argue, show. Some were specially conceived by an artist for such or such event, other, colder, have only the letter.

Some were created in lithographic technic, most are simple offset reproductions. They are many those who like collecting these rectangles of paper, monochrome or in games of colours, in matt paper or brilliant, with many words or almost dumb.

We are happy also to be able to greet, by this pages, mythical galleries as those of Denise René, Louis Carré, Claude Bernard, Berheim Jeune, Maeght, Pierre Loeb and others.

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Complete work(s)

Complete work(s)
Non réalisé à ce jour. All the complete works

Bibliographic track and more

To read about the artist :
  • « The paintings of Paul Jenkins », K. B. Sawyer, Ed. Two Cities, Paris, 1961
  • « P. Jenkins - Prismes brisées », Gal. des Ponchettes, Nice, Ed. Galilée, 1970
  • « Paul Jenkins », Albert Edward Elsen, Ed. Horay, Paris, 1973
  • « Paul Jenkins », Albert Edward Elsen, Abrams Publisher, New York, 1974
  • « Paul Jenkins », Alain Bosquet, Ed. Veyrier, 1982
  • « Paul Jenkins, oeuvres », collectif, cat., Musée Picasso, Antibes, 1987
  • « Euphories de la couleur », André Verdet, Ed. Imago Terrae, St-Paul, 1988
  • « Conjunctions and annexes », Pascal Bonafoux, Ed. Galilée, Paris, 1991
  • « L’eau et la couleur », F. A. Trapp, Ed. Paca, Angers, 1994
  • « P. Jenkins », K. Minturn, cat. d’exposition, The Redfern Gallery, Londres, 2005
To read from the artist :
  • « Dialogue entre Paul Jenkins et Jean Cassou », Ed. Galerie Karl Flinker, Paris,
  • « P.J., oeuvres majeures », Palais des Beaux-Arts, Lille, int. P. Bouchet, 2005
Website :
http://www.pauljenkins.net

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Art movements

+ LYRIC ART, ABSTRACT, TACHISM / 1950-1960 / Jackson Pollock, Emil Schumacher, etc.
All art movements

See & discover

Beyond works currently in stock, it seemed to me useful to combine business with pleasure by letting you discover others works by artists in my gallery. These artworks, now sold or removed from our website, have been in our stock in the past.

These pages will undoubtedly make it possible for some of you to associate an image with its title or the other way round, for others it will be a good time to discover more on such and such artist. For the sake of confidentiality – the pieces being no longer available – we won't display neither their numbering or their price. For whatever reason, make sure to visit this amazing art database with to date 6441 online works just for your pleasure! Michelle Champetier

See & discover