Helen Frankenthaler - Untitled, July, 1975, 1975 (detail)

Helen Frankenthaler

United States 1928 - 2011

Abstract Expressionism, Painting, Prints

Helen Frankenthaler
United States
September 23, 2016
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Widely considered to be a major contributor to the history of postwar American art, Helen Frankenthaler was an abstract expressionist painter who was an active artist for over six decades. Due to her talent and long artistic reign, Frankenthaler influenced generations of modern painters with her vital and ever-changing work[1]. Among a variety of phases and stylistic shifts she went through during her life, Helen is mostly respected for her role as one of the most crucial painters to tackle the famous Color Field method – a style of American abstract painting which features large expanses of unmodulated color covering the greater part of the canvas. This career path Frankenthaler chose for herself effectively engraved her name in the art history next to the likes of Jackson Pollock, Barnett Newman and Mark Rothko.

Helen Frankenthaler' American works are mostly kept inside a museum
Helen Frankenthaler – Around the Clock with Red, 1983 – Image via beetleinabox.com

Early Life and Education

Helen Frankenthaler was born on December 12th in the year of 1928, in the heart of New York City. She was a daughter of Alfred Frankenthaler, a respected Supreme Court judge held in high regard both in and outside of the Big Apple borders. As she was spending her early childhood on Manhattan’s Upper East Side, Helen enjoyed every aspect of life that goes alongside being a member of a cultured and progressive Jewish intellectual family[2]. Since her parents expected their heirs to continue the family’s successful business endeavors, Frankenthaler and her two sisters were encouraged to prepare themselves for professional careers from an early age. However, Helen persisted in her desires to study artistic expression despite such pressures within her home. Ultimately, her parents accepted that fact and she was sent to study at the Dalton School before she began attending classes at the Bennington College in Vermont. It was here that Frankenthaler learned everything about pictorial composition and started to demonstrate a cubist-derived style which marked her early career. After she received her diploma in the year of 1949, Helen studied privately with Australian-born painter Wallace Harrison, and later with Hans Hofmann. During this time, Frankenthaler had a relationship with Clement Greenberg, but she decided to leave him and marry a fellow artist Robert Motherwell in 1958. The two were a couple to the year if 1971 when their divorce became official.

Helen Frankenthaler - Adirondacks, 1992 - Image via wikiartorg
Helen Frankenthaler – Adirondacks, 1992 – Image via wikiart.org

Analyzing Frankenthaler’s Art

After all the influences that affected Helen’s art were done modeling her creative vocabulary, Frankenthaler’s work became very resistant to analysis and characterization. She was initially associated with abstract expressionism due to her focus on forms latent in nature. Helen was fond of and easily recognizable for her use of fluid shapes, abstract masses and lyrical gestures that were not truly rivaled by any contemporary artist. Like most of her colleagues back then, Frankenthaler preferred working in large formats that proved to be the best possible choice for her often very simplified abstract compositions. Helen put special emphasis on spontaneity, as evidenced by her own statement: A really good picture looks as if it’s happened at once. It’s an immediate image. For my own work, when a picture looks labored and overworked, and you can read in it—well, she did this and then she did that, and then she did that—there is something in it that has not got to do with beautiful art to me. And I usually throw these out, though I think very often it takes ten of those over-labored efforts to produce one really beautiful wrist motion that is synchronized with your head and heart, and you have it, and therefore it looks as if it were born in a minute. Chronologically speaking, Frankenthaler’s official artistic career was launched during the year of 1952 when her exhibition titled Mountains and Sea opened its gates to the wider public. Since then and throughout all the years of the 1950s, her artworks showed tendencies to be highly focused on the center, meaning that the majority of main pictorial incidents took place in the middle of the canvas, while the edges were of little consequence to the composition as a whole. Around the year of 1957, Helen started to experiment and take her work down a new path when she began introducing linear shapes and more organic, rounded forms. She also started exploring the potential of symmetrical paintings which was the first time Frankenthaler was interested in the edges of her paintings.

Soon, Frankenthaler art took another turn as she put in motion another general simplification of her style. She began to make use of single stains and blots of solid color against white backgrounds, often in the form of geometric shapes. At this time, Helen also abandoned oil paints and turned to acrylic as they allowed for more opacity and sharpness than her previous materials. Frankenthaler turned to thicker layers of color as well, hoping that more concentrated paint would enable her to employ brighter tones and reminisce her love for the early avant-garde. By the 1970s, Helen was completely done with her now-legendary soak-stain technique. Her work became much calmer and relaxed, as evidenced both by her shades and brushwork. Her application of a single color to large areas, or fields as they were more commonly called, was the reason why Frankenthaler’s was described as a part of the Color Field movement. This style was characterized by the use of hues that were similar in tone or intensity, organized in large formats and more or less simplified compositions – all of these were qualities descriptive of Frankenthaler’s work. Interestingly, the practitioners of the Color Field saw themselves apart from the Abstract Expressionists because they stayed clear of emotional, mythic or the religious content, allowing the personal and gestural painterly application to take precedent.

Helen’s greatest pieces in the eyes of art history are her uniquely balanced Color Field artworks which were always critic’s arts of choice, regularly finding their way into gallery and public spaces

Like Helen, Pollock also wanted to have both a gallery and a school
Helen Frankenthaler – A Green Thought in a Green Shade, 1981 – Image via newcriterion.com

Later Life and Career

When she matured as an artist and left the turbulent and wild lifestyle with Robert Motherwell behind her, Frankenthaler preferred to paint in privacy and isolation, letting the silence influence her inner thought. Some pieces required assistants, but even then Helen instructed them to be as quiet and inconspicuous as humanly possible. She also recognized that, as an artist, she needed to constantly challenge herself in order to grow. Keeping that in mind, she began to experiment with printmaking at a lithographic workshop in West Islip, Long Island. Tatyana Grosman, a skilled silkscreen artist, helped Helen a lot as she was beginning this chapter of her career. It should also be noted that Clifford Ross was Helen’s cousin – he is a famous artist who combines several mediums, including photography, video, sculpture and painting, all in order to create his unique artworks. In 1976, Frankenthaler expanded her art a step forward by practicing the medium of woodcuts. For the next three decades, Helen created pieces of art from the fields of painting, silkscreen prints and woodcuts, defining the current directions these mediums were following with every artwork. Besides her creative endeavors, Frankenthaler also served on the National Council on the Arts of the National Endowment for the Arts between the years of 1985 to 1992. In 1994, she married Stephen M. DuBrul, Jr., an investment banker who worked for the Ford administration. Although she was often connected to the feminist movements that were popping up all over the world at the time, Frankenthaler did not consider herself a feminist[3]. Followers of such ideas would regularly desire to build their campaigns around Helen’s name, but she would always distance herself by simply stating that she never had a single obstacle or issue due to her gender. As a crown achievement for her life’s work, Frankenthaler received the National Medal of Arts in the year of 2001. When all was said and done, her other greatest awards included the First Prize for Painting at the first Paris Biennial, Temple Gold Medal, New York City Mayor’s Award of Honor for Arts and Culture and Distinguished Artist Award for Lifetime Achievement. She passed away in 2011 at her home in Darien, Connecticut[4].

Due to her unrivaled control over tools and ability to make changes, Frankenthaler influenced generation upon generation of modern painters with her dynamic and vivid works

American canvas works and other paintings of this technique Frankenthaler liked are held in the Jackson Greenberg museum
Helen Frankenthaler – Flirt, 1995 – Image via alchetron.com

The Final Word

Ultimately, it should be noted that art critics have never unanimously praised Frankenthaler’s work. Some were not impressed by, what they called, thinness in substance and uncontrolled method. Some critics were even bold enough to brand Helen’s art as too sweet in color and too poetic, without always defining what poetic exactly is in their opinion. However, there were by far more individuals who enjoyed and appreciated Frankenthaler’s work, praising the informality and impulse of her compositions. One of the main backers of Helen’s pieces was Barbara Rose, a famous critic whose word traveled quite far and was always appreciated. In one of her most famous statements concerning the art of Helen Frankenthaler, Rose hailed the freedom, spontaneity, openness and complexity of an image, not exclusively of the studio or the mind, but explicitly and intimately tied to nature and human emotions.

This artist is represented by Gagosian Park & 75 New York, Gagosian West 24th Street New York, Gagosian Beverly Hills, Gagosian Britannia Street London, Puccio Fine Art, Kunzt.gallery and Gagosian West 21st Street New York.


  1. Wilkin, K., Frankenthaler at the Guggenheim, The New Criterion, October 23, 2015
  2. Chadwick, W., Women, Art, and Society, New York: Thames & Hudson, 2007
  3. Elderfield, J., After a Breakthrough, Museum of Modern Art, 1989
  4. Glueck, G., Helen Frankenthaler, Abstract Painter Who Shaped a Movement, Dies at 83, New York Times, December 27, 2011

Featured image: Featured image: Helen Frankenthaler – Untitled, July, 1975, 1975 (detail). Acrylic on canvas. 10 x 12 3/4 in. 25.4 x 34.9 cm. This is a unique work. Photo courtesy Berry Campbell Gallery
All images used for illustrative purposes only.

YearExhibition TitleGallery/MuseumSolo/Group 
2016Women Of Abstract ExpressionismDenver Art Museum, Denver, COGroup
2016Modernist Intersections: The Tia CollectionThe University of Arizona Museum of Art, Tucson, AZGroup
2016Not in New York: Carl Solway and CincinnatiCincinnati Art Museum, Cincinnati, OHGroup
2016Plane.siteGagosian Gallery, San Francisco, CAGroup
2016Declaration Robischon Gallery, Denver, COGroup
2016Prints And PotsHiram Butler Gallery, Houston, TXGroup
2016Mid-Century in Full Color Exhibition Galerie D'orsay, Boston, MAGroup
2016Learning to See ColorUniversity of Denver, Denver, COGroup
2016Paintings, Drawings & Sculpture John Berggruen Gallery, San Francisco, CAGroup
2016Master Prints of the '70s - '90sZane Bennett Contemporary Art, Santa Fe, NMGroup
2015In the Studio: PhotographsGagosian Gallery , New York City, NYGroup
2015Pretty Raw: After And Around Helen FrankenthalerThe Rose Art Museum, Waltham, MAGroup
2015The Year of the Ram: Works by 22 ArtistsCarl Solway Gallery, Cincinnati, OHGroup
2015Helen Frankenthaler: Aimée ParrottPippy Houldsworth Gallery, LondonGroup
2015Winter SelectionLoretta Howard Gallery, New York City, NYGroup
2014Giving Up One's Mark: Helen Frankenthaler In The 1960S And 1970SAlbright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, NYSolo
2014Helen Frankenthaler Composing With Color: Paintings 1962–1963Gagosian Gallery , New York City, NYSolo
2014Helen Frankenthaler: PaintingsBernard Jacobson Gallery , New York City, NYSolo
2014In Living Color: Andy Warhol and Contemporary PrintmakingJoslyn Art Museum, Omaha, NEGroup
2014Abstraction: Modernist Masters From the Bennington CollectionUsdan Gallery - Bennington College, Bennington, VTGroup
2014Openness And Clarity: Color Field Works From The 1960S And 1970sHonor Fraser, Los Angeles, CAGroup
2014Helen Frankenthaler and David SmithCraig F. Starr Gallery, New York City, NYGroup
2014Starting Out - 9 Abstract Painters 1958 - 1971Tibor de Nagy Gallery, New York City, NYGroup
2014Distilled: The Small Painting ShowBernard Jacobson Gallery, New York City, NYGroup
2014Rothko to Richter: Mark-Making in Abstract Painting from the Collection of Preston H. HaskellPrinceton University Art Museum, Princeton, NJGroup
2014Artists of the James GalleryACME Fine Art & Design, Boston, MAGroup
2014Modern and Contemporary Ceramics Kay Hardy and Gregory Kaslo CollectionBoise Art Museum BAM, Boise, IDGroup
2014Gravity’s EdgeHirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington, DCGroup
2014Making Painting: Helen Frankenthaler And Jmw TurnerTurner Contemporary, Margate, KentGroup
2014American Art: 1950–1975Williams College Museum of Art, Williamstown, MAGroup
2014Color: Theories and StructuresThe Gund Gallery at Kenyon College, Gambier, OHGroup
2013Painted On 21St Street: Helen Frankenthaler From 1950 To 1959Gagosian Gallery , New York City, NYSolo
2013Helen Frankenthaler & Robert MotherwellGreenfield Sacks Gallery, Santa Monica, CAGroup
2013Pollock e gli Irascibili - La scuola di New YorkPalazzo Reale, MilanGroup
2013Pictures of NothingThe Frances Lehman Loeb Art Center, Poughkeepsie, NYGroup
2013Beyond Belief: 100 Years of the Spiritual in Modern ArtThe Contemporary Jewish Museum San Francisco, San Francisco, CAGroup
2013Dna: Strands Of AbstractionLoretta Howard Gallery, New York City, NYGroup
2013Playing with Process: Explorations in Experimental PrintmakingMFAH - Museum of Fine Arts Houston, Houston, TXGroup
2013Re:Vision - Landscapes from the Permanent CollectionMount Holyoke College Art Museum,South Hadley, MAGroup
2013American Masters Art of the 19th – 21st centuriesSomerville Manning Gallery, Greenville, DEGroup
2013April Brief: Notes from the Color FieldDavis Museum at Wellesley College, Wellesley, MAGroup
2013Ab-ex Re-con - Abstract Expressionism ReconsideredNassau County Museum of Art, Roslyn Harbor, NYGroup
2013Caro, Frankenthaler, Louis, Motherwell, Noland, Olitski, StellaPaul Kasmin Gallery, New York City, NYGroup
2013Abstractions On PaperCrystal Bridges Museum of American Art, Bentonville, ARGroup
2012Helen Frankenthaler - Solo ShowGreg Kucera Gallery, Seattle, WASolo
2012Helen Frankenthaler - Solo ExhibitAugen Gallery, Portland, ORSolo
201210! The First DecadeDaum Museum of Contemporary Art, Sedalia, MOSolo
2012Master VisionsAnnandale Galleries, Annandale, NSWGroup
2012Elles: PompidouSeattle Art Museum, Seattle, WAGroup
2012OC CollectsOrange County Museum of Art, Newport BeachGroup
2012Under Pressure: Contemporary Prints from the Collections of Jordan D. Schnitzer and His Family FoundationJoslyn Art Museum, Omaha, NEGroup
2012Highlights 2012John Berggruen Gallery, San Francisco, CAGroup
2012Summer Group ShowBernard Jacobson Gallery, LondonGroup
2012Abstract ExpressionismNational Gallery of Australia, Canberra, ACTGroup
2012On Paper: From Baselitz To Warhol KM fine Arts, Chicago, IL Group
2012After MayCheryl Hazan Gallery, New York City, NYGroup
2012Recent AcquisitionsWeatherspoon Art Museum, Greensboro, NCGroup
2012Expressions in Color: Selections from the Museum's 20th Century CollectionKrannert Art Museum, Champaign, ILGroup
2012Thanks: 50th Anniversary ExhibitionCarl Solway Gallery, Cincinnati, OHGroup
2012Reconciling OppositesBernard Jacobson Gallery, New York City, NYGroup
2012Great PrintsReynolds Gallery, Richmond, VAGroup
2012Still In ContextWilliam Havu Gallery, Denver, COGroup
2012Gallery SelectionsHollis Taggart Galleries, New York City, NYGroup
2012You Call This ArtFlorida Gulf Coast University Art Gallery, Fort Myers, FLGroup
2012Ulae | Universal Limited Art EditionsGreg Kucera Gallery, Seattle, WAGroup
2011WoodcutsTalley Dunn Gallery, Dallas, TXSolo
2011Frankenthaler: East and BeyondKnoedler & Company, New York City, NYSolo
2011Fifty Years of Contemporary Prints 1960-2010Huntington Museum of Art, Huntington, WVGroup
2011Helen, Louise & KaraTrinity Gallery, Alan Avery Art Company, Atlanta, GAGroup
2011Highlights from the Ernestine and Bradley Wayne CollectionVan Doren Waxter, New York City, NYGroup
2011Farbe im Fluss - 20 Jahre WeserburgWeserburg | Museum für moderne Kunst, BremenGroup
2011Fall Group ShowBernard Jacobson Gallery, New York City, NYGroup
2011Prints - Contemporary Masters IZane Bennett Contemporary Art, Santa Fe, NMGroup
2011The Shape of the ProblemElizabeth Leach Gallery, Portland, ORGroup
2011Abstract Delight: Selections from the Polly and Mark Addison CollectionCU Art Museum,Boulder, COGroup
2011Summer Group ShowBernard Jacobson Gallery, New York City, NYGroup
2011A Summer of American Masters with Robert Indiana KM fine Arts, Chicago, IL Group
2011Abstract Expressionist New YorkArt Gallery of Ontario, Toronto, ONGroup
2011A View from AboveJohn Berggruen Gallery, San Francisco, CAGroup
2011Gallery SelectionsHollis Taggart Galleries, New York City, NYGroup
2011A Sense of Place: Landscapes From Monet to HockneyBellagio Gallery of Fine Art, Las Vegas, NVGroup
2011The Abstract AutographKemper Museum of Contemporary Art, Kansas City, MOGroup
2011Abstract Now and ThenBerkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive BAM - PFA, Berkeley, CAGroup
2011NEW PRINTSZane Bennett Contemporary Art, Santa Fe, NMGroup
2010Prints and Proofs of the 1960s from the Artist's ArchiveCraig F. Starr Gallery, New York City, NYSolo
2010Helen Frankenthaler - Paintings 1961 – 1973John Berggruen Gallery, San Francisco, CASolo
2010WomenArtists NewBritainMuseumNew Britain Museum of American Art, New Britain, CTGroup
2010Color FieldsDeutsche Guggenheim, BerlinGroup
2010A Selection of rarely seen, privately owned, early Abstract Expressionist worksCrane Kalman Gallery, LondonGroup
2010American Prints 1965 - 2005Kunsthandel Jörg Maaß, BerlinGroup
2010Paintings, Drawings and SculptureJohn Berggruen Gallery, San Francisco, CAGroup
2010Master Prints from the Gallery CollectionLeslie Sacks Fine Art, Los Angeles, CAGroup
2010Kenneth Noland, Helen Frankenthaler, Robert MotherwellPace Prints, New York City, NYGroup
2010Changing Soil: Contemporary Landscape Painting (Za Fukei)Boston Museum of Fine Arts, NagoyaGroup
2010Works from the Gallery CollectionCarl Solway Gallery, Cincinnati, OHGroup
2010Hacia la barriga de un pichónMuseo Tamayo, Mexico CityGroup
2010LE GRAND GESTE! - Informel and Abstract Expressionism, 1946-1964Museum Kunstpalast,DusseldorfGroup
2010Colorscope: Abstract Painting 1960-1979Santa Barbara Museum of Art, Santa Barbara, CAGroup
2010More Than Life!Pori Art Museum, PoriGroup
201020TH CENTURY CONTEMPORARY MASTERSZane Bennett Contemporary Art, Santa Fe, NMGroup
2010Group Show 2010Loretta Howard Gallery, New York City, NYGroup
2009Cold PressPage Bond Gallery, Richmond, VAGroup
2009MOCA´s First Thirty YearsMOCA Grand Avenue, Los Angeles, CAGroup
2009DIVERSE PROPOSITIONSZane Bennett Contemporary Art, Santa Fe, NMGroup
2009Modern and Contemporary MastersBuschlen Mowatt Gallery, Palm Desert, CAGroup
2009Group ExhibitionBuschlen Mowatt Gallery, Vancouver, BCGroup
20091969MoMA PS1, New York City, NYGroup
2009American Abstractions Part 2: Paintings 1950'sKatharina Rich Perlow Gallery, New York City, NYGroup
2009Circa 1959Loretta Howard Gallery, New York City, NYGroup
2009The Passionate Pursuit: Gifts and Promised Works from Donna and Cargill MacMillanPalm Springs Art Museum, Palm Springs, CAGroup
2009Influences of Nature on AbstractionTayloe Piggott Gallery, Jackson, WYGroup
2009Blocks of Color: American Woodcuts from the 1890s to the presentJane Voorhees Zimmerli Art Museum, New Brunswick, NJGroup
2009In Their Own Right: Contemporary Women PrintmakersThe McNay Art Museum, San Antonio, TXGroup
2009Lipstick Traces: Women in the CollectionDaum Museum of Contemporary Art, Sedalia, MOGroup
2009Days Lumberyard StudiosACME Fine Art & Design, Boston, MAGroup
2009Selections from the Permanent CollectionPalm Springs Art Museum, Palm Springs, CAGroup
2009New York CoolBowdoin College Museum of Art, Brunswick, MEGroup
20091968-69: 40 Years LaterArmand Bartos Fine Art, New York City, NYGroup
2009Enacting AbstractionVancouver Art Gallery, Vancouver, BCGroup
2009Action Abstraction: Pollock, de Kooning, and American Art, 1940–1976Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, NYGroup
2009Artists in Their StudiosNorman Rockwell Museum, Stockbridge, MAGroup
2009Long Island collectsNassau County Museum of Art, Roslyn Harbor, NYGroup
2009Mixografia: Innovation and CollaborationPortland Art Museum, Portland, ORGroup
2008Frankenthaler at Eighty: Six DecadesKnoedler & Company, New York City, NYSolo
2008Helen Frankenthaler: Paintings 1959 - 2002Bernard Jacobson Gallery, LondonSolo
2008Helen FrankenthalerPace Prints, New York City, NYSolo
2008Helen Frankenthaler, East and Beyond: Woodcuts 1973-77Craig F. Starr Gallery, New York City, NYSolo
2008Action AbstractionSaint Louis Art Museum, Saint Louis, MOGroup
2008Contemporary Masters: Print SelectionsAmy Simon Fine Art, Westport, CTGroup
2008The 30th Anniversary – Part IWetterling Gallery, StockholmGroup
2008From Abstract Expressionism to Pop Art: Johns, Rauschenberg and the Aesthetic of IndifferenceSonomoa Valley Museum of Art, SonomaGroup
2008Color as Field. American Painting 1950-1975Frist Center for the Visual Arts, Nashville, TNGroup
2008Summer Breeze - Seletions from the Contemporary CollectionPhoenix Art Museum, Phoenix, AZGroup
2008Action Abstraction: Pollock, de Kooning, and American Art, 1940-1976The Jewish Museum of New York, New York City, NYGroup
2008New York Cool: Paintings and Sculptures from the NYU Art CollectionGrey Art Gallery, NYU,New York City, NYGroup
2008The American Evolution - A History through ArtThe Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington, DCGroup
2008Color as Field - American Painting, 1950–1975Smithsonian American Art Museum,Washington, DCGroup
2008LIMITED EDITIONS: 20th Century Prints from the Ponderosa CollectionThe Dayton Art Institute, Dayton, OHGroup
2008Paradigms and the Unexpected: Modern and Contemporary Art from the Shey CollectionSamuel P. Harn Museum of Art, Gainesville, FLGroup
2008Action PaintingFondation Beyeler, RiehenGroup
2008Contemporary Visions - A Focus on Jacksonville CollectionsMOCA - Museum of Contemporary Art Jacksonville, Jacksonville, FLGroup
2007Inaugural Exhibition of New SpaceLoretta Howard Gallery, New York City, NYGroup
2007Color as Field - American Painting, 1950–1975Denver Art Museum, Denver, COGroup
2007Contemporary, Cool and CollectedMint Museum of Art, Charlotte, NCGroup
200720th-Century TreasuresNaples Museum of Art, Naples, FLGroup
2007Abstract Expressionism and Other Modern Works: The Muriel Kallis Steinberg Newman Collection in The Metropolitan MuseumThe Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York City, NYGroup
2007Art for Yale: Collecting for a New CenturyYale University Art Gallery, New Haven, CTGroup
2007Backstage Pass: Collecting Art in Kansas CityKemper Museum of Contemporary Art, Kansas City, MOGroup
2007American IdolsAmy Simon Fine Art, Westport, CTGroup
2007Calculation and Impulse: Abstract American PrintsJane Voorhees Zimmerli Art Museum, New Brunswick, NJGroup
2007Out of the Crate: New Acquisitions Contessa Gallery, Cleveland, OHGroup
2007The New York School- Works from a Private CollectionLyman Allyn Art Museum, New London, CTGroup
2007This Place is Ours! Recent Acquisitions at the AcademyPennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia, PAGroup
2007ULAE: New EditionsLarissa Goldston Gallery, New York City, NYGroup
2007Breaking the Mold: Selections from the Washington Gallery of Modern Art, 1961-1968Oklahoma City Museum of Art, Oklahoma City, OKGroup
2007SIN AND SOULZane Bennett Contemporary Art, Santa Fe, NMGroup
2007Contemporary Currents - Selections from the Bank of America CollectionMOCA - Museum of Contemporary Art Jacksonville, Jacksonville, FLGroup
2007Drawn from New Orleans: Twentieth-Century Works from Private CollectionsNewcomb Art Gallery , New Orleans, LAGroup
2007Lyrical Color: Morris Louis, Gene Davis, Kenneth Noland and the Washington Color SchoolThe Phillips Collection, Washington, DCGroup
2007Etching since 1950Davison Art Center, MiddletownGroup
2007Collection - SelectionPaul Sharpe Contemporary Art, New York City, NYGroup
2006Pre-Post: American Abstraction 1940s - 60sVan Doren Waxter, New York City, NYGroup
2006Mix MastersAmy Simon Fine Art, Westport, CTGroup
2006Summer Selections: Portraits - Places - PerspectivesJack Rutberg Fine Arts, Los Angeles, CAGroup
2006Marks of Intention. Abstract Art on Paper 1945-2005The Minneapolis Institute of Arts,Minneapolis, MNGroup
2006American MastersLeslie Sacks Fine Art, Los Angeles, CAGroup
2006A New Age: American Painting from the 1950s and 1960sUlster Museum, Belfast, Northern IrelandGroup
2006Women's Work: Paintings 1970 - 1990Van Doren Waxter, New York City, NYGroup
2006Contemporary Master PrintsJerald Melberg Gallery, Charlotte, NCGroup
2006Solos: 20th Anniversary ExhibitionSelby Gallery - Ringling College of Art and Design,Sarasota, FLGroup
2006Modern and Contemporary Master PrintsReynolds Gallery, Richmond, VAGroup
2006Presses, Pop, and Pomade: American Prints Since the SixtiesThe Frances Lehman Loeb Art Center, Poughkeepsie, NYGroup
2006Red, Yellow, BlueLarissa Goldston Gallery, New York City, NYGroup
2005Against the grain - Helen Frankenthaler woodcutsNational Gallery of Australia, Canberra, ACTSolo
2005New Acquisitions: Part I The ModernsLeslie Sacks Fine Art, Los Angeles, CAGroup
2005Acquisitions Jack Rutberg Fine Arts, Los Angeles, CAGroup
2005The Shape of Colour - Excursions in Colour Field Art, 1950-2005Art Gallery of Ontario,Toronto, ONGroup
2005Wilder a tribute to the Nicholas Wilder Gallery, Los Angeles 1965-1979Franklin Parrasch Gallery, New York City, NYGroup
2005Highlights of the Bradley CollectionMilwaukee Art Museum, Milwaukee, WIGroup
2005In Black and WhiteLori Bookstein Fine Art, New York City, NYGroup
2005Picasso to Pop Contessa Gallery, Cleveland, OH Group
2005Surfing the Century: Twentieth-Century ArtUMMA - The University of Michigan Museum of Art,Ann Arbor, MIGroup
2005Boca Raton collectsBoca Museum of Art, Boca Raton, FLGroup
2005Clement Greenberg: A Critic’s CollectionKatonah Museum of Art, Katonah, NYGroup
2005Out of Site - Selections from the Marsha S. Glazer CollectionArt Museum at U.C. Santa Barbara, Santa Barbara, CAGroup
2004Woodcuts & WoodblocksPace Prints, New York City, NYSolo
2004Helen FrankenthalerLeslie Sacks Fine Art, Los Angeles, CASolo
2004Great Print Event IIRussell Bowman Art Advisory, Chicago, ILGroup
2004Celebrating the Jewish Contribution to 20th-Century American ArtThe RISD Museum - University of Rhode Island, Providence, RIGroup
2004Through American Eyes: Two Centuries of American Art from the Huntington Museum of ArtTaft Museum of Art, Cincinnati, OHGroup
2004Super-Sized: The Big Print ShowGreg Kucera Gallery, Seattle, WAGroup
2004Das MoMA in BerlinNeue Nationalgalerie, BerlinGroup
2004Picasso to ThiebaudCantor Arts Center at Stanford University, Stanford, CAGroup
2003Helen Frankenthaler - The Woodcuts 1973 – 2000Portland Art Museum, Portland, ORSolo
2003FrankenthalerRoyal Scottish Academy, Edinburgh, ScotlandSolo
2003Helen Frankenthaler - HeartsASU Art Museum - Arizona State University Art Museum, Tempe, AZSolo
2003Frankenthaler - Paintings on PaperMuseum of Contemporary Art North Miami (MOCA), Miami, FLSolo
2003Great Print EventRussell Bowman Art Advisory, Chicago, ILGroup
2003Classic Works From the 1960sLoretta Howard Gallery, New York City, NYGroup
2003Das Recht des BildesKunstmuseum Bochum, BochumGroup
2003Selected AquisitiontsJohn Berggruen Gallery, San Francisco, CAGroup
2002Frankenthaler - The WoodcutsYale University Art Gallery, New Haven, CTSolo
2002Works on PaperThe Douglas F. Cooley Memorial Art Gallery, Portland, ORGroup
2002Nocturne NocturnalSkoto Gallery, New York City, NYGroup
2002Black Mountain College: Una aventura americanaMuseo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía,MadridGroup
2002An American Legacy, A Gift to New YorkWhitney Museum of American Art, New York City, NYGroup
2002Clement Greenberg: A Critic's Collection The Dayton Art Institute, Dayton, OHGroup
2002All American, Part IIVan Doren Waxter, New York City, NYGroup
2002The Big Americans - The Art of Collaboration National Gallery of Australia, Canberra, ACTGroup
2002The New York School: Abstract Expressionism and BeyondUMMA - The University of Michigan Museum of Art, Ann Arbor, MIGroup
2002Color Field: Spotlight on the Collection of the Museum of Fine Arts, HoustonMFAH - Museum of Fine Arts Houston, Houston, TXGroup
2002Images of NatureMFA - Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Boston, MAGroup
2002Imagine - Abstract Paintings from the 1970sSpeed Art Museum, Louisville, KYGroup
2001Helen Frankenthaler Prints: 1970 - 2000Greg Kucera Gallery, Seattle, WASolo
2001Modernism & Abstraction - Treasures from the Smithsonian American Art MuseumWorcester Art Museum, Worcester, MAGroup
2001Rotating Group ShowJim Kempner Fine Art, New York City, NYGroup
2001Prints by Painters: American AbstractionsHenry Art Gallery, Seattle, WAGroup
2001Abstrakter Expressionismus in AmerikaMuseum Pfalzgalerie Kaiserslautern, KaiserslauternGroup
2001The 1970s: Suites and Portfolios From The Hallmark CollectionsH&R Block Artspace at Kansas City Art Institute, Kansas City, MOGroup
2001Motherwell, Nevelson and FrankenthalerHaggerty Museum of Art, Milwaukee, WIGroup
2001On Paper IICarnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburg, PAGroup
2001Impression To Form - Selected Works From SAM's Tyler Art CollectionSingapore Art Museum,SingaporeGroup
2001Garner Tullis – The Art of CollaborationTucson Museum of Art, Tucson, AZGroup
2000Helen Frankenthaler - On Paper 1990 - 1999Bernard Jacobson Gallery, LondonSolo
2000The First Fifty YearsTibor de Nagy Gallery, New York City, NYGroup
2000Color-Field PaintingMFA - Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Boston, MAGroup
2000The Cities CollectWalker Art Center, Minneapolis, MNGroup
2000The Poetic LandscapeBarbara Mathes Gallery, New York City, NYGroup
1999American Works on Paper, 1945-1975Hallie Ford Museum of Art (HFMA), Salem, ORGroup
1999Primed & Unprimed: Paintings from 60s and 70sVan Doren Waxter, New York City, NYGroup
1999Amerikanische Zeichnungen Raab Galerie, BerlinGroup
1999Crossing the ThresholdUniversity Art Museum University at Albany, State University of New York, Albany, NYGroup
1998Helen Frankenthaler - Mountains and SeaDeutsche Guggenheim, BerlinSolo
1998Frankenthaler - The Darker PaletteThe Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington, DCSolo
1998Después de Montañas y mar - Frankenthaler 1956-1959Museo Guggenheim de Arte Moderno y Contemporáneo, BilbaoSolo
1998Helen Frankenthaler: Tales of Genji and Other New WorksGreenfield Sacks Gallery, Santa Monica, CASolo
1998Helen Frankenthaler: Tales of GenjiGreg Kucera Gallery, Seattle, WASolo
1998After Mountains and Sea - Frankenthaler 1956-1959Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York City, NYSolo
1998Reflections of MonetMFA - Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Boston, MAGroup
1998The New York School MoMA - Museum of Modern Art, New York City, NYGroup
1998Peggy Guggenheim: A Centennial CelebrationSolomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York City, NYGroup
1998Elements of the Natural: 1950-1992 MoMA - Museum of Modern Art, New York City, NYGroup
1998Locating Clement Greenberg Davison Art Center, MiddletownGroup
1997Etchings of the Twentieth CenturyMargo Leavin Gallery, Los Angeles, CAGroup
1997American Images: Twentieth Century Art from the Southwestern Bell ArtThe Art Museum of South Texas, Corpus Christi, TXGroup
1997Thirty-five Years at Crown Point PressThe National Gallery of Art, Washington, DCGroup
1996Recent AcquisitionsGreg Kucera Gallery, Seattle, WAGroup
1996Color Field   Galerie nächst St. Stephan - Rosemarie Schwarzwälder, ViennaGroup
1995Helen Frankenthaler Reflections - A suite of 12 new lithographsGreg Kucera Gallery, Seattle, WASolo
1995Helen Frankenthaler: Recent Prints and Paintings on PaperGreenfield Sacks Gallery, Santa Monica, CASolo
1995The Painterly PrintGreg Kucera Gallery, Seattle, WAGroup
1995Classics by the MastersGreg Kucera Gallery, Seattle, WAGroup
1993Helen Frankenthaler: PrintsThe National Gallery of Art, Washington, DCSolo
1993Spheres of influenceWhitney Museum of American Art, New York City, NYGroup
1990Helen Frankenthaler - A paintings retrospectiveThe Detroit Institute of Arts, Detroit, MISolo
1990Helen Frankenthaler - A paintings retrospectiveLos Angeles County Museum of Art - LACMA,Los Angeles, CASolo
1989Helen Frankenthaler: A Painting RetrospectiveThe Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth, Fort Worth, TXSolo
1989Helen Frankenthaler: A Painting RetrospectiveMoMA - Museum of Modern Art, New York City, NYSolo
1988Made in the sixtiesWhitney Museum of American Art, New York City, NYGroup
1988American print renaissance 1958-1988Whitney Museum of American Art - Fairfield County,Stamford, CTGroup
1987Helen Frankenthaler Recent Prints: 1985-87Greg Kucera Gallery, Seattle, WASolo
1981Frankenthaler: the 1950´sThe Rose Art Museum, Waltham, MASolo
1980The Prints of Helen FrankenthalerBirmingham Museum of Art, Birmingham, ALSolo
1980Frankenthaler -Solo ExhibitKalamazoo Institute of Arts, Kalamazoo, MISolo
1980Three Generations of Twentieth Century American Art: Betty Parsons, Helen Frankenthaler and Lynda BenglisBirmingham Museum of Art, Birmingham, ALGroup
1980An Exhibition of Important Contemporary Drawings, Paintings and SculptureMargo Leavin Gallery, Los Angeles, CAGroup
1980A History of American Art Through PrintmakingMissoula Art Museum MAM, Missoula, MTGroup
1980Printed Art - A View of two DecadesMoMA - Museum of Modern Art, New York City, NYGroup
1975Helen Frankenthaler: Paintings 1969-1975The Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington, DCSolo
1973Helen Frankenthaler Painted Book CoversThe Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York City, NYSolo