Phillis Ideal

Phillis Ideal

From the Permanent Collection

American artist Phillis Ideal (b. 1942, New Mexico) paints large-scale works that paired abstract interpretations of vast southwestern vistas with structurally detailed renditions of the vitality found in the city of New York, her home since 1982. 

Paint functions as both material and expressive force in Juarez/Canal Street (1988). Vibrant color and evocative shapes layered with broad brush strokes draw viewers into dialogue with the artist about the function of environment and geography in the human experience. 

Ideal received her MFA from University of California, Berkeley (1975). She studied under Elmer Bischoff (1916–1991) who, together with Richard Diebenkorn and David Park, founded the Bay Area Figuration movement that blended subject-matter images with abstract expressionism. Ideal taught painting at University of California Berkeley, San Francisco State, Sarah Lawrence College, University of New Mexico, and Brooklyn Museum, and has shown at twenty solo and numerous group exhibitions. Juarez/Canal Street (1988) from the permanent collection was included in the Morris Museum’s exhibition, “The Collected Century: 1900–2000.”

Image Caption: Phillis Ideal (b. 1942), Juarez/Canal Street, 1988. Oil on canvas. 73.5 x 94 inches. Gift of Marilyn Wolff. Collection of the Morris Museum 94.4.

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