House II Portfolio, 2015
Jennifer Losch Bartlett (born March 14, 1941 in Long Beach, California) is an American artist. Jennifer Bartlett emerged in the mid-1970s to become one of the leading American artists of her time, and one of the first female painters of her generation to be both commercially successful and critically acclaimed. Often early professional success overshadows an artist’s subsequent development. In Bartlett’s case, however, the mid-1970s were merely a point of departure for an exceptionally prolific and inventive career, succeeded by various bodies of work that exhaustively explored new methods and media, extended the artist’s vocabulary into sculpture, drawing, and printmaking, and led to designs for theater and film that demonstrate her innovative synthesis of diverse sources and styles. For Bartlett, the center of her universe is the house, which first appeared as a major pictogram in House Piece (1970).
Bartlett’s works embody quintessential ideals of the American way of life, using serialized geometric forms to create familiar objects that recall the American homescape—a house, a tree, a white picket fence—along with literal painterly shapes, lines, or brushstrokes. But the seeming happiness and simplicity of even her most idyllic imagery and most innocent words should not be trusted. Things are always on the edge of slipping, crashing, or dying in Bartlett’s paintings.
Bartlett’s work is represented in a number of public collections, including the Museum of Modern Art in New York City, the Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington, D.C., the Tate Gallery in London, the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis, the Cleveland Museum of Art, The Contemporary Museum, Honolulu, the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, the Israel Museum in Jerusalem, , the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth in Texas, and the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York City.