Americans In Paris Exhibition Review:
“Over 100 works by expat artists who sought an escape from stateside restrictiveness in postwar France”
4Columns, May 3, 2024

Installation view of "Americans In Paris."

Americans in Paris: Artists Working in Postwar France, 1946–1962, curated by Debra Bricker Balken and Lynn Gumpert, Grey Art Museum, 18 Cooper Square, New York City, through July 20, 2024

by Aruna D’Souza

In a 1960 interview, the abstract painter Mark Tobey, after years of living in Paris, where he achieved acclaim from the otherwise relatively chauvinist French critical establishment, nevertheless demurred that he was “an American painter, whatever [that] means.” After securing her position as a major figure in American abstract painting, Joan Mitchell, who spent long periods in France before eventually moving there permanently in 1959, said she hated “to be called an exile or an expatriate”; she was, in the words of poet John Ashbery, an “apatriate”—stateless, more or less.

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