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Constance von Briesen, Triunfo Creek II, Straus Ranch, 1994, oil on canvas.

Rediscovering Constance von Briesen

Saturday, May 11–Sunday, July 28, 2024

Opening Reception: Saturday, May 11 at 3–6 PM

A multitalented artist and craftswoman, Constance von Briesen (1915–2000) lived for nearly fifty years in southern California, making her home in Rustic Canyon. In addition to serving as a lead artist and researcher for the needlework team working to realize Judy Chicago’s installation The Dinner Party (1974–79), she was active for many years in the association Women Painters West and frequently exhibited her work in juried shows across the region, with the Pacific Palisades and Los Angeles Art Associations, among others. Her landscape paintings, watercolors, and drawings offer an exquisite close-up view of the California terrain, capturing creeks, root systems, bare trees, and drought-stricken desert.

The artist’s first solo museum exhibition, Rediscovering Constance von Briesen was occasioned by the generous donation of a driftwood sculpture, once a centerpiece of the von Briesen home before entering the collection of retired Getty Center curator Weston Naef and his wife Mary. Made of conifer from the coast of the Pacific Northwest, von Briesen found the driftwood on a road trip with friends and brought it home to California, where she transformed it into a monumental work that speaks to the wonder of nature. As with her paintings and works on paper, the sculpture is testament to studied, careful observation, requiring no embellishment or flourish beyond what nature itself has created.


This exhibition is curated by Weisman Museum director Andrea Gyorody, with generous assistance and support from Linda Fates, Weston Naef, Jill Walsh, Constance von Briesen, Jr. ('76), and Derek von Briesen.


Image credit: Constance von Briesen, Triunfo Creek II, Straus Ranch, 1994, oil on canvas. Collection of Derek von Briesen and Teri Haynes. 



Saturday, May 11–Sunday, July 28, 2024




Frederick R. Weisman Museum of Art

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