Media File
Ilya Bolotowsky
Date: American painter and printmaker, 1907–1981
Biography: Ilya Bolotowsky was born in St. Petersburg, Russia and immigrated to New York in 1923. Between 1924 and 1930, he received his first art training at the National Academy of Design. Bolotowsky appreciated and was influenced by the work of Piet Mondrian and adopted a non-objective style of painting and printmaking. In 1937, Bolotowsky worked with other abstract artists such as Josef Albers and Alice Mason to found the American Abstract Artists. The organization’s stated purpose was “to unite abstract artists residing in the United States, to bring before the public their individual works, and in every possible way foster public appreciation for this direction in painting and sculpture.”

Bolotowsky worked for the Public Works of Art Project and the Works Progress Administration Federal Art Project during the Depression, creating abstract murals. He experimented with filmmaking and three-dimensional painting constructions, and a major retrospective of his work was held at the Guggenheim Museum in 1974. Bolotowsky's work can be found in major museum and private collections including the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Cleveland Museum of Arts, and the Philadelphia Museum of Art, among others.