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Robert Kulike
"Carnations in Earthenware Jar , 1975" by American Artist Robert Kulike

About the Item

Kulicke hailed from Philadelphia, where he pursued formal education in advertising design at the Philadelphia College of Art, alongside his independent exploration of the art collections at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. After completing a three-year service in the Army during World War II and returning home, he developed an interest in picture framing. Utilizing the G.I. Bill, he ventured to Paris, where he studied painting under Fernand Léger and apprenticed with various framers before establishing his own framing business in New York City in 1951. In New York, Kulicke forged friendships with Abstract Expressionists Franz Kline and Robert Motherwell. He revolutionized frame design with his minimalist yet elegant aluminum band frame, favored by numerous modern artists. His innovative designs, including the renowned "Kulicke frame," gained recognition when commissioned by the Museum of Modern Art in 1956 for traveling exhibitions. Notably, he also devised a Lucite frame for the museum's photography collection and a floating frame used for its masterpieces post-expansion in 1984. Renowned as "the most innovative and influential picture frame designer in the United States" by The New York Times, Kulicke's craftsmanship extended to reproduction frames used in esteemed artworks like Leonardo da Vinci's portrait of Ginevra de' Benci at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., and Giotto's Epiphany at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Though initially discouraged by Léger's preference for large compositions, Kulicke resumed painting in 1957 when tasked with framing Giorgio Morandi's small still life paintings. Influenced by Morandi's style, Kulicke's own paintings focused on diminutive studies, often featuring flowers or singular fruits. His works, described as "more 17th century than 20th," found homes in museums and galleries across New York, including the Victoria & Albert Museum, the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, and the Albright-Knox Art Gallery. In 1968, Kulicke perfected the granulation technique, an ancient goldsmithing method. He shared his expertise through workshops and academies he established, ensuring the technique's preservation and dissemination. His contributions earned him recognition, including election as an Associate member of the National Academy of Design in 1982 and later as a full Academician in 1994. "Carnations in Earthenware Jar , 1975" is housed in an original Robert Kulicke frame.
  • Creator:
    Robert Kulike
  • Dimensions:
    Height: 8 in (20.32 cm)Width: 10 in (25.4 cm)
  • Medium:
  • Movement & Style:
  • Period:
  • Condition:
  • Gallery Location:
    Rockport, MA
  • Reference Number:
    1stDibs: LU2222214173942
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