Interview with Patricia Albers, Author of Joan Mitchell, Lady Painter: A Life

Yesterday I interviewed Patricia Albers about her biography: Joan Mitchell, Lady Painter: A Life.

It will be mostly of interest to those of you who have read or are reading the book.

I asked Patricia about what drew her to Mitchell’s story, how she approached her writing, and how she came to terms with Mitchell’s difficult personality.


You can download the MP3 audio (38 minutes) or listen here:

Joan Mitchell: Lady Painterread and tweet

If you haven’t already read the book, I encourage you to do so. It’s a dense read, but you’ll be rewarded.

Tweet about the book using #ladypainter.



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10 comments to Interview with Patricia Albers, Author of Joan Mitchell, Lady Painter: A Life

  • Loved the interview. Having lived through the 60s as an art student, she was right on with the “Lady Painter” title. To be taken seriously, you had to play with boys. I also want to read the Lee Krasner (Jackson Pollock’s wife and painter in her own right) bio. Now I’ll have to read both of them! Excited that Patricia is writing about Kertesz. About time someone did.

  • *but have you changed your mind about Riopelle? Canada wants to know…:)

    • Sari: As far as I know, I’ve only seen that one painting. I’d love to see more.

      I love that he buddied around with circus performers and race car drivers. I think he would have been fun to hang out with.

      • Here’s a pretty Riopelle, well, prettier than the one’s I found in public collections…It looks like the big galleries got the harder colours & maybe the private collectors got the softer stuff…I went through 8 big public collections & only found a nicer one on Flickr that had sold at Christies…(Yes, even the ones at our National Gallery of Canada are harder to look at- primary reds & blues together…)His knife technique is neat & he uses alot of paint, plus the whole abstract thing & was part of the “Automatistes” group who were insistent on the flow thing…In Paris he was the crazy Canadian, but little did they know, we all are up here!

        • That’s not bad. I can’t find the OKC Riopelle anywhere online. It’s called Corall.

          • Wow! You worked at OKCMOA? NICE collection! Couldn’t find Corall either so I wrote to their curatorial asking if they still have it & for an image source…Let’s see how good they are without you!

          • here she is! (I am going to remove this image within the week, so anyone who wants to have a gander go now)…I am glad to say someone named Alison was kind enough to respond promptly today from the Oklahoma City Museum of Art regarding the Riopelle titled Corall…(I put it in my Flickr account momentarily for education purposes- but it will be down soon, promise)…You can see his signature painting knife technique already, plus his extra thick quantity…I must say the colours are unique in this one- haven’t seen any with coral before…Honestly my husband can’t believe there is a Riopelle in Oklahoma at all- but it turns out there is a sculpture fountain of his there too! Neat!

        • Sari: Thanks for tracking down the image. It’s WAY too bad they won’t let it stay there for longer than a week – especially since you have properly identified it.

          It’s part of the Washington Gallery of Modern Art Collection, which the museum purchased in total (except 1 or 2 pieces that had to stay in D.C.) back in, I think, the early 70s (maybe late 60s). So the works were collected in Washington in the 1960s, which might explain better its inclusion in that collection.

  • I wrote a review on my blog
    Thanks for suggesting the book- just don’t have time for Twitter these days so couldn’t join the discussion there. Looking forward to listening to the interview.