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 Robert Peter Mangold  (1937 - )

/ MAN-gold/
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Lived/Active: New York/Connecticut      Known for: geometric, minimal abstract painting

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Ad Code: 2
Robert Peter Mangold
from Auction House Records.
© 2001 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York
This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Minimalist painter Robert Mangold was born October 12, 1937, in North Tonawanda, New York, growing up in Buffalo, New York. He studied illustration in 1956 at the Cleveland Institute of Art, in Ohio, transferring to fine arts there in 1957, and graduating in 1959. He was influenced by Abstract Expressionism after viewing the major artists of that movement at the 1957 Carnegie International in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and an exhibition of Clyfford Still's paintings at the Albright-Knox Art Gallery in Buffalo.

Receiving a fellowship to the Yale Norfolk Summer School of Music and Art, Norfolk, Connecticut, he began graduate study in 1960 at the Yale University School of Art and Architecture, New Haven, experimenting with a variety of modernist styles. Brice Marden, Nancy Graves, and Richard Serra were classmates.

He married Sylvia Plimack, also an art student at Yale, in 1961. They moved to New York when he received his M.F.A. degree in 1962. He worked at the Museum of Modern Art as a guard, along with artists Sol LeWitt and Robert Ryman, before transferring to a position in the Museum's library.

In 1965, Mangold had his first one-man exhibition of minimalist paintings, which looked like the walls on which they were hung. Titled "Walls and Areas" it was held at the Fischbach Gallery, in New York City, where he showed through 1973. He was included in an exhibition of minimalism at the Jewish Museum, New York City, in 1965-1966. He joined the John Weber Gallery in 1972, Paula Cooper Gallery in 1984, and Pace Gallery in 1991, all New York City galleries.

In the mid-1960s, Mangold was hired to the faculty of the School of Visual Arts, New York City. He received a Guggenheim fellowship in 1969, with which he and Plimack built a home in the Catskill Mountains in New York State. They moved, in the mid-1970s, to Washingtonville, New York, where they still reside.

Mangold's work was exhibited at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York City, in 1971; the Museum of Contemporary Art, San Diego, California in 1974; and the Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam, Holland, in 1982.


This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Robert Mangold was born on October 12, 1937 in North Tonawanda, New York, near Buffalo. As a youngster, he wanted to be another Norman Rockwell. In high school, he discovered that he had an ability to draw. His teachers encouraged him and he studied at the Cleveland Institute of Art where he enrolled in the school's illustration department. By his second year he had switched to the fine arts department, intending to become an art teacher. He graduated from Cleveland in 1959, and went on to Yale, graduating with a Master of Fine Arts degree in 1962.

At Yale, he met and married Sylvia Plimack, a fellow painting student; they were married in 1961 and had two sons, James and Andrew. They moved to New York City, and he worked as a guard at the Museum Of Modern Art and then settled into a permanent teaching position at the School of Visual Arts. They moved to Washingtonville, New York which proved to be the eventual landing place for their family and their work. Mangold also taught painting at Hunter College, Skowhegan Summer Art School, Cornell University Summer Art School and the Yale-Norfolk Summer Art School. He completed numerous shaped canvases, that for him demonstrate the interrogation between line, color and form.

Written and submitted by Jean Ershler Schatz, artist and researcher from Laguna Woods, California.

Sources include:
John Gruen in ARTnews, Summer 1987
Contemporary Artists, St. Martin's Press, 1977, Colin Naylor, editor.

Biography from

Despite the restraint of Robert Mangold's minimalist, geometry-based painting, his work is perceptually elusive and retains a contemplative sensibility. Born in North Tonawanda, New York in 1937, Mangold studied at the Cleveland Art Institute from 1956 to 1959. After receiving a fellowship to study at the Yale Summer School of Music and Art in Norfolk, Connecticut, he transferred to Yale University, where he received his B.F.A. in 1961 and M.F.A. in 1963.

In New York during the early sixties, Mangold worked as a guard at the Museum of Modern Art with colleagues Sol LeWitt, Robert Ryman, Dan Flavin, and Lucy Lippard. Together these artists shared ideas that developed into minimalist theories.

In 1964 Mangold had his first one-person show in New York and subsequently participated in several seminal group exhibitions, including "Systematic Painting" held at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in 1966, and "Primary Structures," at the Jewish Museum in 1967.

 Mangold held various teaching positions, among them the School of Visual Arts in New York, Hunter College, Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, Yale Summer School of Music and Art, and Cornell University Summer Art School. After receiving a Guggenheim Memorial Fellowship in 1969, Mangold moved to upstate New York, where he continued to work in his characteristic hard-edged minimalist style.

In response to his earlier architectonic forms and monochromatic constructions, Mangold shifted to focus on ambiguous geometrical forms, specifically X-shaped canvases. Later he experimented with "Frame Paintings" whose centers were cut away. In 1971, the Guggenheim Museum gave him his first museum exhibition. Currently, Mangold lives and works in upstate New York.

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