A conversation with Frances Archipenko Gray

The wife of the late renowned artist Alexander Archipenko will be reading from her new memoir at the Tel Aviv Museum of Art.

FRANCES ARCHIPENKO GRAY at her home in Woodstock, New York (photo credit: Courtesy)
FRANCES ARCHIPENKO GRAY at her home in Woodstock, New York
(photo credit: Courtesy)
Surrounded by an exceptionally rare collection of works by her late husband, Frances Archipenko Gray will give a reading from her novel My Life with Alexander Archipenko at the Tel Aviv Museum of Art on February 22 at 7:30 p.m.
Alexander Porfyrovych Arhipenko has been referred to as the “Picasso of sculpture” for his innovative use of the Cubist style in three-dimensional forms, however, the artist may be best known for introducing sculptural voids, devising “sculpto-paintings” and experimenting with materials such as clear acrylic and terracotta.
In her memoir, Gray, who was married to Archipenko from 1960 until his death in 1964, shares intimate insights into the artist’s unique philosophy and creative process.
“My first visit to the Tel Aviv Museum marks an important moment in my life, the re-viewing of an amazing cache of early works by Alexander Archipenko” said Archipenko Gray.
The museum’s collection is remarkably unique, as the majority of the artist’s early works were confiscated from European museums and destroyed during the Nazi regime’s purge of “degenerate art.”
Among the 34 works by Archipenko in the museum’s collection are paintings, sculpto-paintings, sculptures, drawings and prints, most from 1908-1921. A highlight of the collection is Woman with Fan (1914), the earliest of Archipenko’s surviving sculpto-paintings, which combines diverse materials and objects in what was then an unfamiliar and bold technique of assemblage.
“These works remain of art-historical importance and in my mind eccentrically beautiful in their hidden spirituality” said Archipenko Gray. “Personally, I feel fortunate to be here and thankful that these works are here to greet me and future visitors.”
Gray has devoted much of her life to the documentation and preservation of Archipenko’s work. She serves as acting president of the Archipenko Foundation, and is an expert in authenticating his work. She lives in Woodstock, New York.
Tickets to the reading are free to the public. For more info visit: www.tamuseum.org.il