Arshile Gorky Catalogue Raisonné
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Catalogue Entry

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Photo: Peter Schälchli
D1338
[Drawing, Agony]
c. 1946–47
Graphite pencil and crayon on paper
22 1/2 x 28 1/2 in. (57.2 x 72.4 cm)
Recto not inscribed
Verso not seen
Private collection
Exhibitions
Sidney Janis Gallery, New York, Drawings for Principal Paintings by Gorky, September 26–October 22, 1955, no. 15, 16 or 30, as "Agony."
Sidney Janis Gallery, New York, Late Drawings by Gorky, September 28–October 24, 1959, no. 30, ill. in b/w, as "Study for Agony I."
University Gallery, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, Gorky Drawings, October 27–December 2, 1960, as "Study for Agony I."
Museum of Modern Art, New York, Arshile Gorky, 1904–1948, December 19, 1962–February 12, 1963, no. 96, ill. in b/w, p. 40, as "Study I (Agony)." Traveled to: Washington Gallery of Modern Art, Washington, D.C, March 12–April 14, 1963.
Arts Council of Great Britain, London (organizer), Tate Gallery, Arshile Gorky: Paintings and Drawings, April 2–May 2, 1965, no. 79, as "Study I (Agony)," dated 1946–47.
Arts Council of Great Britain, London (organizer), Palais des Beaux-Arts, Brussels, Arshile Gorky, Paintings and Drawings / Arshile Gorky: Schilderijen en Tekeningen, May 22–June 27, 1965, no. 119, as "Voorstudie I (Doodsangst) / Study I (Agony)," dated 1946–1947. Traveled to: Museum Boymans van Beuningen, Rotterdam, the Netherlands, July 24–September 5, 1965. (Museum Boymans van Beuingen 1965)..
M. Knoedler & Co. Inc, New York, Gorky: Drawings, November 25–December 27, 1969 (Exhibition catalogue: Jordan 1969), no. 145a, p. 62, as "Study for Agony."
Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, Arshile Gorky 1904–1948: A Retrospective, April 24–July 19, 1981, no. 219c, as "Study for Agony," dated 1946–47, [not in catalogue]. Traveled to: Dallas Museum of Fine Arts, September 11–November 8, 1981; Los Angeles County Museum of Art, December 3, 1981–February 28, 1982.
Musée cantonal des Beaux-Arts, Lausanne, Switzerland, Arshile Gorky: Œuvres sur Papier, 1929–1947; Arbeiten auf Papier, 1929–1947, September 21–November 11, 1990, no. 84, ill. in color, p. 154, as "Etude pour Agony / Studie zu Agony." Traveled to: Graphische Sammlung Albertina, Vienna, January 16–February 27, 1991; Musée Cantini, Marseille, France, March 15–May 30, 1991; Musée d'art Moderne de Saint Étienne, France, June 20–September 2, 1991; Frankfurter Kunstverein, Frankfurt, September 25–November 10, 1991; Kunsthalle Bremen, Germany, November 19, 1991–January 26, 1992.
Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Venice, Italy, Arshile Gorky: Works on Paper / Opere su Carta, April–June 1992, no. 42, ill. in color, p. 121, as "Study for "Agony" / Studio per "Agonia"." Traveled to: Palazzo delle Esponsizioni, Rome, October 14–November 30, 1992; Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian, Lisbon, July 21–August 27, 1993.
Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, Arshile Gorky: A Retrospective of Drawings, November 20, 2003–February 15, 2004, no. 119, ill. in color, p. 203, as "Agony." Traveled to: Menil Collection, Houston, March 5–May 9, 2004.
Philadelphia Museum of Art, Arshile Gorky: A Retrospective, October 15, 2009–January 10, 2010, no. 162, ill. in color, p. 324, as "Study for Agony." Traveled to: Tate Modern, London, February 10–May 3, 2010. (Gale 2010).; Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, June 6–September 20, 2010.
Gagosian Gallery, New York, Arshile Gorky: 1947, May 6–July 1, 2011, as "Study for Agony."
Hauser & Wirth, New York, Ardent Nature: Arshile Gorky Landscapes, 1943–47, November 2–December 23, 2017 (Exhibition catalogue: Spender and Devaney 2017), ill. in color, p. 130; p. 139, as "Study for Agony."
Ca'Pesaro International Gallery of Modern Art, Venice, Italy, Arshile Gorky: 1904–1948, May 8–September 22, 2019, ill. in color, p. 197, as "Study for Agony."
Literature
Reiff, Robert F. "A Stylistic Analysis of Arshile Gorky's Art from 1943–1948." Ph.D. diss., Columbia University, New York, 1961, fig. 93, ill. in b/w, p. 371, as "Study for Agony."
Levy, Julien. Arshile Gorky. New York: Harry N. Abrams, Inc., 1966. Monograph, pl. 175, ill. in b/w, p. 199, as "Study for Agony I," dated 1946.
Spender, Matthew. From a High Place: A Life of Arshile Gorky. New York: A.A. Knopf, 1999, ill. in b/w, p. 316, as "Study for Agony."
Beredjiklian, Alexandre. Arshile Gorky: sept thèmes majeurs. Suresnes, France: Alphamédian & Johanet; Lisbon: Fondation Calouste Gulbenkian, 2007. Monograph, discussed p. 66, as "Agonie."
Fer, Briony. "Doing Things on Paper." In Eva Hesse: Oberlin Drawings: Drawings in the Collection of the Allen Memorial Art Museum Oberlin College. New York: Hauser & Wirth Publishers, 2019. Exhibition catalogue, fig. 2, ill. in color, p. 14, as "Study for Agony."
Notes
Watermark / Stamp: Strathmore
Strathmore paper with blindstamp, lower left: STRATHMORE / [thistle] / ARTIST
Recto, in pencil, lower right [by Agnes Gorky Phillips]: A. Gorky
The drawing was examined framed; no documentation of its verso has been made available.

Commentary

The drawing's overall composition is related to two paintings by Gorky, Agony (see P323) and the posthumously titled Study for Agony (P322), both dated to 1947 by the artist, and from which this title derives (see related work).  

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