INTRODUCTION to the 1955-56 exhibition catalog

by Harold Weston, President

Our organization was founded in 1940 by artists of independent
tendencies primarily interested in the modern movement. Our members
believe in freedom of artistic expression and are opposed to arbitrary
control of thought or action in whatever form it may exist. Recognizing
that art is a factor through which the civilization of a people may be
judged, our hope is to add in some measure to the development of
painting and sculpture in the United States. Although, for practical
reasons, we have kept our membership below one hundred, it
represents a cross-section of modern art in America. Exhibitions of our
members' work are held annually in New York City - for several years at
the Wildenstein Galleries and twice at the Riverside Museum and the
National Arts Club. Smaller exhibitions have been circulated to
museums and colleges from Massachusetts to California. Each year we
organize a forum or a series of forums, generally at the Art Students
League of New York, to promote understanding of current art
movements, ways to improve the relationship between the artist, the
museum and the public, and similar objectives. Our organization is a
member of the committee formed in the U. S. by fourteen leading
national art societies for the International Association of Plastic Arts. At
the First Assembly of this Association of painters, sculptors and graphic
artists, held in Venice, Italy, in 1954, two of our members were among
the five U. S. delegates. The traveling exhibitions of our members' work
selected and circulated by the American Federation of Arts and
particularly our Museum Gift Plan offer opportunities to the American
public to get to know by direct observation the wide range of methods
and purposes of modern American painting and sculpture.

  Harold Weston (1894-1972) (self portrait in 1939)

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