b. 1927, Brooklyn, New York
American born artist Alex Katz is renowned for his figurative paintings, which examine the nature of representing the three-dimensional world on canvas in simplified portraits and landscapes. Katz was born in Brooklyn and attended the Cooper Union School of Art in New York, before studying art at the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in Skowhegan. Amidst the height of Abstract Expressionism in the United States, Katz painted representational works, but in the 1950s, his quick, expressive brushstrokes represented the influence of artists such as Jackson Pollock and Willem de Kooning. In the late 1950s and early 1960s, his adherence to simplified forms and to careful studies of light, flatness, and color are particularly evident in his work. His allegiance to figuration and his embrace of the two-dimensional surface prefigured these features in Pop Art in the 1960s.