Alex Katz Biography

Alex Katz




Alex Katz was born in Brooklyn, New York on July 24, 1927. Katz's mother was an actress deeply interested in poetry, and his father was a businessman, who was also interested in the arts. Alex Katz attended Woodrow Wilson High School for its unique program that allowed him to devote his mornings to academics and his afternoons to the arts. Katz entered The Cooper Union Art School in Manhattan, a prestigious college of art, architecture and engineering. Katz studied painting under Morris Kantor, while being trained in modern art theories and techniques.

In 1949, Katz was awarded a scholarship for summer study at the Skowhegan School for Painting and Sculpture in Maine. His first solo show was held at the Roko Gallery in 1954. In the late 1950s, he moved towards realism in his paintings, and he became increasingly interested in portraits. He painted his friends and his wife, Ada.

In 1965, Katz began his work in printmaking, where he went on to produce lithographs, etchings, silkscreen, woodcuts and linoleum cuts. He began designing sets and costumes for choreographer Paul Taylor in the early 1960s, and he painted many images of dances throughout the years. He transitioned to a new subject of fashion models in designer clothing in the 1980s.

Alex Katz's work has been in more than 200 solo exhibitions and about 500 group exhibitions internationally since 1951. His work has been in the Albertina Museum in Vienna, The Farnsworth Art Museum in Rockland in Maine, Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, the Sara Hildén Art Museum in Tampere Finland, Musée Grenoble in Grenoble, France, Irish Museum of Modern Art in Dublin, Ireland, The Jewish Museum in New York, and many more worldwide.

Biography taken in part from