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Franz Kline: Coal and Steel Exhibition

franz kline


Shown above: Franz Kline, Untitled – Locomotive, ca. 1945-47 ©2012 The Franz Kline        Estate/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York


NEW YORK, NY – January 15, 2013Baruch College presents the exhibition Franz Kline: Coal and Steel at the Mishkin Gallery from Friday February 8 to March 5, 2013. An opening reception will take place from 6-8 p.m on Thursday, February 7.

Franz Kline (1910-1962), one of the most famous painters of the mid-twentieth century, is well known for his large, abstract, black and white paintings. However, his early representational work is almost unknown. Franz Kline: Coal and Steel specifically focuses on Kline’s progression from representation to abstraction by emphasizing his early work, and the prominence of his often overlooked use of coal mining imagery throughout his career.

Many of Kline’s rarely seen landscapes and portraits from coal country are on display at the Mishkin Gallery. The exhibition juxtaposes Kline’s figurative and abstract works in order to focus specifically on his evolution of style, revealing how his later non-representational painting was deeply rooted in his own early experience in Pennsylvania mining country. Works like Untitled (Locomotive), ca. 1945-47, and Study for Caboose, 1961, show how Kline was experimenting with black and white, near-abstraction throughout his career. Even the black and white color of his works recalls the monochrome landscape of coal country.

Franz Kline: Coal and Steel features 49 paintings and drawings by Franz Kline, along with supplementary photographs, graphic works, and other documentary materials. There are several works on loan from the National Gallery of Art, Washington D.C., along with rarely seen paintings belonging to private collectors. Works in the exhibition include Chief (Train) (1942), Street Scene Greenwich Village (1943), Self-Portrait (1946), Pennsylvania Landscape (1948-49), and Study for Caboose (1961), among others.

In addition, this exhibition includes several documentary photographs of Pennsylvania anthracite mines and miners by photographer George Harvan. His photographs provide a clear, visual record of the type of environment—the coal chutes, trains, and smokestacks—with which Kline would have been familiar.

Gallery Hours: Monday through Friday, noon to 5 p.m. and Thursday, noon to 7:00 p.m. The Mishkin Gallery, located at 135 E. 22nd Street at Lexington, is free and open to the public.  For information about the gallery, call Sandra Kraskin at (646) 660-6652.




About Baruch College:

Baruch College is a senior college in the City University of New York (CUNY) with a total enrollment of more than 17,000 students, who represent 160 countries and speak more than 100 languages. Ranked among the top 15% of U.S. colleges and the No. 5 public regional university, Baruch College is regularly recognized as among the most ethnically diverse colleges in the country. As a public institution with a tradition of academic excellence, Baruch College offers accessibility and opportunity for students from every corner of New York City and from around the world.  For more about Baruch College, go to


Manny Romero, (646) 660-6141,

Mercedes Sanchez, (646) 660-6112,


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