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Joseph Raffaele, Abstract Oil on Canvas, 1958



Large abstract modernist oil on canvas painting by Joseph Raffaele / Raffael (born 1933) from his first solo exhibition at Kanegis Gallery, Newbury St. Boston in November 1958. Concurrently Raffaele had left for Italy on a two year Fulbright scholarship to Florence and Rome. Signed on back of stretcher. Remains of Kanegis label. Marked 119. 49-7/8” X 41-1/2” canvas inside frame not including a 1” silvered wood frame. This painting has been in the collection of a Boston architect since the late 1950's. Rare example of this artist's earliest work. Joseph Raffael Born in Brooklyn, New York, 22 February 1933 Joseph was the youngest of three children and the only son of Sicilian and Swiss-Irish parents, Joseph Marino Raffaele and Cora Kaelin Raffaele. He became interested in drawing at age 7, and spent his high school years taking classes at the nearby Brooklyn Museum. From 1951-54, he attended Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art in New York City, along with fellow students R.B. Kitaj and Paul Thek. Upon graduation from Cooper Union, Raffael received a fellowship to the Yale Summer School of Art and Music in Norfolk, Connecticut. Through the support of his instructor Bernard Chaet, Raffael was awarded a scholarship to the Yale School of Art, where he studied color and drawing with Josef Albers and received his BFA in 1956. Instead of pursuing a master's degree, he moved to NY to become a painter, where he worked freelance part-time at Jack Prince Textile Studio, alongside Carolyn Brady, Audrey Flack, and others, while working nights and weekends on his paintings. In 1958, he won a Fulbright fellowship to study for two years in Florence and Rome, and began painting complexly colored watercolors of flower forms. He mounted his first New York exhibition of his Umbrian watercolors in 1963, at the d’Arcy Galleries, while at the same time battling hepatitis from which he almost died; when he recovered, he shifted to "real life" images based on photographs. Raffael’s distinctively original art has earned critical praise ever since the mid-60s, while he was living in New York City and, later, in Marin County, California. During this period, his circle of artist friends in New York included the British photorealist Malcolm Morley, the painter Don Nice, the writer Linda Rosenkrantz, the photographer Peter Hujar and, in California, the artist William T. Wiley. In the United States, Joseph Raffael is represented by the Nancy Hoffman Gallery in New York.


  • Creator
    Joseph Raffaele (Artist)
  • Dimensions
    Height: 50.75 in. (128.91 cm)Width: 42.5 in. (107.95 cm)Depth: 1 in. (2.54 cm)
  • Style
    Mid-Century Modern (Of the Period)
  • Materials and Techniques
  • Place of Origin
  • Period
  • Date of Manufacture
  • Condition
    Wear consistent with age and use. A few marks and one tiny hole to canvas.
  • Seller Location
    Hingham, MA
  • Reference Number
    1stDibs: LU886623230082

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    Ships From: Hingham, MA
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About the Seller
4.9 / 5
Located in Hingham, MA
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Established in 2008
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