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“I’d like to introduce myself – my name is Forrest Bess”

Thursday, Sep 3, 2020, 7 pm – 8 pm

“I’d like to introduce myself – my name is Forrest Bess”. Self-Portrayal and Self-Interpretation in Forrest Bess’ Letters
Lecture by Dr. Dieter Schwarz (former Director of Kunst Museum Winterthur)

On the one hand, Forrest Bess was the outsider who made his living as a fisherman on Houston Bay, on the other hand he saw himself as a professional artist seeking contact with the New York art world – especially the artist Rosalie Berkowitz, the art historian Meyer Schapiro and the gallery owner Betty Parsons. Bess persistently conveyed to his correspondents thoughts on his painting expecting them to comment and criticize. These letters are not only enlightening in terms of the painter’s biography and the career he aspired to, they also provide insight into the logic of his work. The letters are the counterpart to his painterly work; for Bess they are the instrument of self-interpretation and self-dramatization. Based on these documents, the lecture traces aspects of the artist’s life and work.

Dieter Schwarz is a curator, author and was Director of the Kunstmuseum Winterthur from 1990 to 2017.

Admission to the event is free of charge. Please register in advance at: or by calling T +49 561 70727-3005.