New Guest-Curated Exhibition – Dialogue and Defiance

May 2, 2024  13:17  |  News

New Guest-Curated Exhibition – Dialogue and Defiance

Guest curator Valerie Hellstein at the Clyfford Still Museum, photo by Fireside Production ©


The Clyfford Still Museum (CSM) is set to unveil “Dialogue and Defiance: Clyfford Still and the Abstract Expressionists,” curated by scholar Valerie Hellstein, opening to Museum members on May 10 and to the public on May 11 in Denver, CO.

The exhibition explores Clyfford Still’s complex relationship with the artists’ community in the late 1940s and early 1950s, despite his vocal objections. Despite his disdain for the commercialized art world, remained engaged in dialogue with his contemporaries, challenging and exploring shared questions and ideas.

According to Hellstein, although Still distanced himself from the commercial art scene, he maintained connections with fellow artists, participating in discussions and exploring common themes. The exhibition aims to present Still within the context of his artistic community, showcasing artworks, exhibition text, interactive features, and archival displays that highlight key conversations and their influence on his art.


New Guest-Curated Exhibition – Dialogue and Defiance

Guests at the Clyfford Still Museum, photo by Circe B Photo ©


The exhibition follows a chronological display of Still’s works and will be on view until January 12, 2025. Visitors can access additional insights and resources through the CSM mobile guide in the free Bloomberg Connects arts and culture app, featuring Hellstein’s commentary, archival audio recordings of Still, and a reenactment of an excerpt from an artists’ panel performed by Buntport Theater actors.

Valerie Hellstein, a respected scholar in Abstract Expressionism, brings over 15 years of expertise to the exhibition, having published extensively and spoken on various aspects of the movement.