Timothy Hennessey (American born 1925)
Timothy Hennessy was born in San Francisco in 1925. More some time he lived and painted in Paris and the Ecole des Beaux Arts in Florence. When he came back to the USA he began exhibiting with the Betty Parsons Gallery in New York. His work is characterized by a diversity of form including sculptures, paintings, objects and costumes (ponchos) that were used in art performances. Hennessy's work absorbs the formalist elements of his modernist contemporaries, but ultimately breaks away from them through his elaborate repetitions of eastern and medieval patterns. He paints almost exclusively on un-stretched canvases or pieces of fabric that he prepares and stitches together. He suspends the work freestanding in space showing both sides. Due to this duality these pieces, two works in one, act as a game for the mind that tends to equalize and obliterate repetitive forms. The concept of a painting that stands sculpturally in space exploring the relationship between itself and the surrounding space is one of the central issues of Hennessy's work and social circle. It was the visionary Frederick Kiesler who first revolutionized the presentation of art by hanging paintings off the walls when he designed exhibitions in Peggy Guggenheim's gallery "Art of This Century" in post war New York. The legendary collector said about Hennessy that, he was the last major artist she had discovered.
From Pop: The Genius of Andy Warhol:
"For ten days in late March and early April, his [Warhol's] fixation of the moment was Timothy Hennessy... a frequent escort of wealthy older women... Hennessey, an American expatriate then living in Venice, met Tibor de Nagy director John Myers in Italy and Myers offered him a show, which opened on February 28. During the show, according to Hennessey, Myers said, 'A terrible little man is coming by, a very boring person, but you have to be nice to him because he might buy a painting.' And it was Andy Warhol... Warhol bought no paintings, but invited Hennessy for lunch [probably at Serendipity]... Warhol talked about his mother, and then abruptly asked Hennessy if he could draw his feet, mentioning that he had just made an appointment with the gallery owner Betty Parsons to draw hers. The next day, Andy appeared at Hennessy's temporary studio on Sullivan Street 'in his little tweed jacket,' as Hennessy recollected, 'and said, 'Now take off your shoes and socks,' He had a satchel, and out of it he brought twelve American flags. He said, 'Now step on them.' And he did an exquisite line drawing...' At the end of their session, Warhol took copies of The Gold Book and Wild Raspberries from his satchel and presented them to his new friend. What Hennessy didn't say is that Warhol drew his feet again a few days later, this time entwined with those of Hennessy's lover, a striking thirty-year-old named Muriel Latow. 'I think he would have liked to draw us in bed,' said Latow, but Andy had to make do with with their feet.' Andy was besotted with Timothy. When he drew us, his eyes got watery and his face was flushed.'"
Muriel Latow was the gallery owner who has been credited with coming up with the idea of Warhol painting soup cans.
2010: B & M Theocharakis Foundation for the Fine Arts and Music Athens, Greece
Iolas Gallery, Carlo Cardazzo and the Peggy Guggenheim Museum in Venice.
Galleria Cavallino, Venezia, Gallery Zygos, Athens, Iolas Gallery, New York, Museum of Art, Providence Rhode Island, Gallerie Rive Gauche, Paris, Tibor de Nagy Gallery, New York, Galleria Naviglio, Milan, Musée des Arts Décoratifs, Paris, Museum of Art, Phoenix Arizona, Betty Parsons Gallery, New-York, Iris Clert Gallery, Paris, Max Hutchinson Gallery, New York, Artcurial Gallery, Paris. He participated in the Carnegie International in 1962.
“A Selection of American Abstract Paintings 1948-1962 (from a private collection),” Newton College of the Sacred Heart, Newton, Massachusetts, November 1962.
Artists: Paul Feeley; Abby Fink; Maurice Gorchov; Timothy Hennessy; Ralph Humphrey; Agnes Martin; Jackson Pollock; Tony Smith; Theodoros Stamos; Clifford Still.