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Yvonne Jacquette

Yvonne Jacquette (b. 1934, Pittsburgh, PA – d. 2023, New York, NY) is renowned for the nocturnal cityscapes, landscapes and aerial views depicted in her work. Born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and raised in Stamford, Connecticut, Jacquette attended the Rhode Island School of Design before moving to New York City in 1956. Both a printmaker and painter, Jacquette’s interest in cloud formations, weather patterns, and aerial views was first sparked during a flight to San Diego in 1969. She subsequently focused on aerial New York views in the 1980s and 1990s. The artist sharpened her signature bird’s eye perspective by chartering planes from New Jersey’s Teterboro Airport, working from the Empire State Building, and using empty office spaces and enclosed decks of the World Trade Center to create elevated views of the city. After a trip to Hong Kong in 1990, she began including multiple perspectives in her compositions, making new spatial configurations through heightened color, elemental repetition, and manipulation of light, scale, and perspective. Though her primary focus is New York City, she has painted aerial views of major cities across the United States, Canada, and Japan.

Printmaking is an important part of Jacquette’s practice and she has made several silkscreens, lithographs, and woodcuts that depict New York City, Chicago, and New Jersey. The majority of her woodcuts, which she typically spends a year or more hand-cutting, are printed in dark inks on Japanese Okawara paper. She prefers this material for its natural contrast and ability to smoothly absorb the dense ink.

Jacquette was a visiting professor at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, 1972-1976, Parsons School of Design in New York City, 1975-1978 and again at the University of Pennsylvania from 1979-1984.

Mary Ryan Gallery held exhibitions of her prints in 2009 and 1996, publishing 10 woodcuts between 1997 and 2009. The 2009 gallery exhibition “Yvonne Jacquette: The Complete Woodcuts, 1987-2009” traveled to the Springfield Art Museum, MO.

She has participated in major solo and group exhibitions, including at the Brooklyn Museum of Art (2019), Shelburne Museum (2018), British Museum (2017), Portland Museum of Art (2016), National Academy of Design, (2012), Yale University Art Gallery (2011), Museum of the City of New York (2008), Swarthmore College, (2008), Springfield Museum of Art, MO (2005) and theMuseum of Fine Arts, Boston (1990). The Cantor Center for the Visual Arts at Stanford University, CA, organized a comprehensive retrospective in 2002, which traveled to the Colby College Museum of Art, Utah Museum of Fine Arts and the Hudson River Museum. In 2008, the Museum of the City of New York organized “Under New York Skies: Nocturnes by Yvonne Jacquette.”

Her work is included in numerous private and public collections, among them the Brooklyn Museum, NY; Carnegie Institute, Pittsburgh, PA; Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington, DC; Hunter Museum of Art, TE; Mcnay Art Museum, TX; Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY; Museum of Fine Art, Boston, MA; Museum of Modern Art, NY; Museum of the City of New York, NY; Philadelphia Museum of Art, PA; Palmer Museum of Art, PA; Rhode Island School of Design, RI; Samuel P. Harn Museum of Art, FL; Staatliche Museum Berlin, DE; Springfield Museum, MO and the Whitney Museum of American Art, NY.

Important publications include Aerial Muse: The Art of Yvonne Jacquette by Hilarie Faberman (New York, Hudson Hills Press) and Picturing New York: The Art of Yvonne Jacquette and Rudy Burckhardt (New York, Museum of the City of New York and Bunker Hill Publishing, 2008). In 2009, Mary Ryan Gallery published “Yvonne Jacquette: The Complete Woodcuts, 1987-2009” with an essay written by Jordan Karney.
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