On the Front Lines: Military Veterans at the Art Students League of New York

Painting by Al Held of tracing white triangle on the top right corner with black, red, orange, turquoise lines.

Al Held. Untitled, 1958. oil on canvas. 30.25 x 34.5 inches. Collection of Michael Hackett-Hale and David Hale, courtesy of Hackett | Mill. © 2016 Al Held Foundation, Inc. / Licensed by Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York.


April 2–August 7, 2016


Artist List

Charles Alston, Stanley Boxer, Terence Coyle, Everett Raymond Kinstler, Jack Faragasso, Michael Goldberg, Peter Golfinopoulos, Al Held, John Hultberg, Paul Jenkins, Donald Judd, Alfred Leslie, Knox Martin, Frank O’Cain, Anthony Palumbo, Robert Rauschenberg, and William Scharf


The UB Art Galleries is proud to present On the Front Lines: Military Veterans at The Art Students League of New York. This exhibition is an examination of veterans’ artistic impact on The Art Students League of New York and the development of post-World War II American art. With benefits from the G.I. Bill of Rights, many veterans returning from active duty received tuition credit and a monthly stipend for living expenses, which made it possible for them to attend The Art Students League of New York to learn and experiment with their artistic practices.

Since the passage of the G.I. Bill in 1944, more than 4,000 veterans have studied at The Art Students League of New York. Many of those veterans shaped the course of American art. The artists in this exhibition came to The Arts Students league early in their careers and it was a place where they began to develop their personal styles in response to Abstract Expressionism—the major movement at the time in the New York art world. Many studied with Morris Kantor and Yauo Kuniyoshi, who influenced the development of their individual styles coming out of The Art Students League.


On the Front Lines was organized by Jillian Russo, curator of the Phyllis Harriman Mason Gallery at The Art Students League of New York. This revised presentation is organized by Robert Scalise, Assistant Director for Exhibitions and Collections at the UB Art Galleries in collaboration with The Art Students League of New York, and will include additional artwork from the university’s significant collection and other lenders.