Lyrical Abstraction: Works from the Permanent Collection by Natvar Bhavsar and Robert Natkin

On View November 1, 2010–January 9, 2011
Click to read the catalogue online here

Natvar Bhavsar, Kandariya VII, 1986-1991, dry pigment and acrylic on paper, Gift of Steven M. Jacobson, HHAR 4547

Lyrical Abstraction: Works from the Permanent Collection by Natvar Bhavsar and Robert Natkin brings together the work of artists Robert Natkin (American, 1930-2010) and Natvar Bhavsar (Indian, b. 1934), both known for their use of color and texture, and active in the Lyrical Abstraction movement. The exhibition  features work from the Hebrew Home’s permanent collection, including vibrant, textured paintings using dry pigment by Bhavsar, and lithographs that exemplify Natkin’s utilization of lively color and pattern.

Robert Natkin, Untitled (#5 in Suite of 12), 1978-1979 lithograph, gift of Hershel Sarbin, HHAR 5073

Lyrical Abstraction in America was a period in the late 1960s-1970s that was characterized by a focus on color, texture and other painterly modes of working. It was closely linked with Color Field painting and Abstract Expressionism; a dramatic departure from the styles of minimalism and geometric lines and shapes that dominated the art world in the 1950s. Artists working in the Lyrical Abstraction movement, such as Bhavsar and Natkin, typically painted in an expressionistic, fluid style, drawing more from intuition than abstract aesthetic theory. Bhavsar’s heavily textured works on paper using dry pigment, a technique derived from an ancient form of Indian sand painting, appear as though they may be photographs taken from a telescope, exuding an otherworldly quality. Natkin used textured surfaces, such as cloth, as stencils in his work to create nebulous patterns that appear as faint shapes and cross-hatches underneath layers of lively, undulating color.

As a member of the American Association of Museums, The Hebrew Home at Riverdale is  committed to publicly exhibiting its art collection throughout its 32-acre campus including the Derfner Judaica Museum and a sculpture garden overlooking the Hudson River and Palisades. The Derfner Judaica Museum + The Art Collection provide educational and cultural programming for residents of the Hebrew Home, their families and the general public from throughout New York City, its surrounding suburbs and visitors from elsewhere. The Home is a nonprofit, non-sectarian geriatric organization serving more than 11,000 elderly persons in greater New York through its resources and community service programs. Museum hours: Sunday – Thursday, 10:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. Art Collection and grounds open daily, 10:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. Call 718 581-1596 for holiday hours and to schedule group tours, or for further information please visit our website at

This exhibition is supported, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council.