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Grace Clements

Theme/Style – Post-Surrealism, figurative art, Abstraction

Media – Oils, murals, lithographs

Artistic Focus – A leading spokesperson for avant-garde aesthetic philosophies being promoted by Los Angeles-area artists in the 1930s, Grace Clements saw architecture as the basis for art, and used architectural fragments and the trompe l'oeil textural effects of synthetic Cubism. She also simulated film splicing techniques in her creation of montages that created a feeling of sequential frames in a reel. She explained the new art form of Post-Surrealism as cerebral and calculated in its organization, yet still able to communicate to the public by clothing messages about social concerns in images that were both modern and clear.

Career Highlights –

• Grace Clements studied for five years in New York City with Kenneth Hayes Miller and Boardman Robinson before moving west.
• Coming to Los Angeles in 1930, she began painting professionally while teaching at Chouinard and Stickney Schools, and soon gained praise for her Modernist approach.
• Just one year later, she was honored with a solo exhibition at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, where her 21 paintings demonstrated a wide thematic and stylistic range.
• Clements brought Post-Surrealism to a national audience in an article in Art Front magazine, and then in an exhibition that traveled from the San Francisco Museum of Art to the Brooklyn Museum in 1936.
• Following her marriage in 1938, Clements abandoned her painting to travel with her husband and work as a writer on modern art and design.