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collections > permanent collection > prints > Paul jenkins

Paul Jenkins
(American, b. 1923)
Sanctuary, 1972
Lithograph, 38 3/4" x 53”
Margery Wolf-Kuhn Art Acquisition Endowment Fund (86.024)

The distinctive abstract style of Paul Jenkins is based on poured pigment and surface manipulation to create semitransparent veils of overlapping color.  The resultant stained-glass effect is suggestive of depth and inner illumination, giving Jenkins’ work a meditative quality that accords with his own mystical outlook.  In paintings and prints such as Sanctuary, Jenkins finds his inspiration in Zen Buddhism, the I Ching, and the theories of psychologist Carl Jung.

Jenkins studied art in his native Kansas City, Missouri, and with Yasuo Kuniyoshi at the Art Students League of New York.  Becoming a part of the Abstract Expressionist scene during the mid-1950s, Jenkins had evolved his mature style by the early 1960s.  Since then, he has exhibited widely and his work has been acquired by major museums in the United States, Europe, Israel and Japan.