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 Robert Warren Dash  (1931 - 2013)

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Lived/Active: New York/New Mexico      Known for: absract landscape painting, teaching, garden conservancy organizer

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Ad Code: 3
Robert Warren Dash
from Auction House Records.
Those Trees, 1966-67
Artwork images are copyright of the artist or assignee
This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Following is an obituary of the artist, written by Richard Lewin and posted by editor Taylor K. Vecsey, in the Southampton Patch, September 16, 2013, Southampton, Long Island, New York.

Madoo Conservancy founder Robert Dash

Robert Dash, an internationally renowned artist behind the Madoo Conservancy in Sagaponack, died there on Saturday. He was 82.

An abstract impressionist painter, Dash never formally studied painting, though he had a strong interest in abstract expressionist artists such as Willem de Kooning. He has exhibited in one-man shows in major American art galleries, as well as in Holland and England.

His works is featured in collections at the Modern Art Museum in Munich, the Guggenheim Museum, the Boston Museum of Fine Arts, the Philadelphia Museum of Fine Arts and the Corcoran Gallery.

Funeral arrangements have not been announced yet, though a memorial service in the spring, when the gardens at Madoo are at their finest, is likely.

After spending time on the South Fork, Dash bought a two-acre property with an 18th-century hay barn and sheds on Sagg Main Street in 1966. He would tame it to create a natural, organic garden, that he eventually opened up to the public as the Madoo — which means "My Dove" in Scottish.

In 1993, Dash formed a not-for-profit corporation and deeded over the property to the conservancy to manage and maintain the gardens, though he continued to live and work there. Since it's opening to the public, it has been featured by several publications. In 2005, National Geographic, selected Madoo as one of 22 Secret Gardens in North America worthy of a visit.

It was once described in The New York Times as, "Robert Dash's ever-changing masterpiece." The property also displays framed poems, letters and works of art from those who found inspiration there, including Georgia O’Keefe and Fairfield Porter.

The property is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Richard Warren Dash was born in New York City on June 6, 1931, to Emmanuel Dash, an insurance executive, and the former Shirley Nisinson. His mother died at the Southampton Nursing Center at 100 in 2001. His brothers were Gregory Dash, who died in 2010, and Matthew, who is also deceased.

Homeschooled most of his childhood due to illness, he left Manhattan for college at the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque.

He was also a writer, authoring a book, Notes from Madoo: Making a Garden in the Hamptons, in 2000. He wrote a longtime weekly column for The East Hampton Star, called "Notes from Madoo." He also taught for a few years at Southampton College.

Dash tended to the gardens himself for many years. In an interview with Paul Cummings for the Archives of American Art in 1974, he said gardening and painting were quite similar. "And it illustrates -- the same thing with painting -- the unlimited possibilities in a small area, because the garden is very small. I mean you can stunningly create the new composition by just slight movement or clipping, the same way you do in painting, wipe out, and so forth. "

Submitted by Douglas Petri

Biography from Vered Gallery:
Robert Dash is known for his Hamptons paintings.  Dash ‘s painterly  sensuality is purely American.  It is clear and direct, recording the commonplace.  Never at a loss for subject matter among the fields and hedgerows of the Hamptons, Robert Dash has long been associated with a with a sensual realm over the merely intellectual, favoring the “ultimate reality” of immediate physical experience.

Dash never formally studying painting, he developed a strong interest in the abstract expressionists, particularly De Kooning, at The University of New Mexico in Albuquerque, which he attended in part to escape the city.  After college Robert Dash spent a year in Italy and upon returning to New York City worked for Arts and then Art News, while painting at night.  He had his first show in 1960.  Since then, he has painted, written and gardened near Sagg Pond on eastern Long Island, at residence among the changeable celebration of plantings, paths, views and architectural expressions of Madoo, a much-admired garden conservatory of his own making.

A longtime Hamptons resident, Dash’s works have been exhibited in one-man exhibitions in Holland, England, and Germany as well as numerous major American art galleries.  He also participated in many group exhibitions including the Museum of Modern Art, Yale University and the Fine Arts Gallery University of Missouri.  His works are also featured in museum collections including the Butler Institute; University Art Museum – University of Califormial;  Corcoran Gallery; Modern Art Museum, Munich; Guggenheim Museum; Boston Museum of Fine Arts; Philadelphia Museum of Fine Arts; and Yale University Art Museum;  
Selected Solo Exhibitions:
Kornblee Gallery NY (annual exhibitions),
Fischbach Gallery NY,
Hirschl & Adler – NY,
Crane Kalman Gallery - London;
Modern Art Museum – Munich;
The Parrish Art Museum – Southampton, New York;
The Allentown Art Museum – Allentown, Pennsylvania;
Guild Hall – East Hampton, New York;
Hermitage Arts – Amsterdam, Holland
Vered Gallery, East Hampton NY

Selected Museum Group Exhibitions:
Yale University Art Museum
Museum of Modern Art
American Federation of the Arts
Norfolk Museum of Arts
Nelson-Atkins Art Museum
American Academy of Arts and Letters
The DeCordova Museum
Knox Albright Museum
Fine Arts Gallery, University of Missouri
Butler Institute;

Selected Corporate Collections:
The Bank of New York
Chase Manhattan Bank
Chemical Bank

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