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Hofstra University Museum
  • Pushing Boundaries: American Art After World War II | January 29-August 16, 2019 |Emily Lowe Gallery, behind Emily Lowe Hall, South Campus
  • Inspiration: Japanese Woodblock Prints | March 26-July 26, 2019 | Joan and Donald E. Axinn Library, Ninth Floor, South Campus

Pushing Boundaries: American Art After World War II

January 29 - August 16, 2019
Emily Lowe Gallery


The atrocities and horrors perpetrated during World War II shattered beliefs about the inherent goodness of humanity, causing accepted norms to be questioned. As much of the world was coping with the harrowing aftermath of the war, physical borders were redrawn, new alliances were created, and national identities were re-examined and transformed. America, whose territory was relatively unscathed by a war that was fought largely in Europe and the Pacific, saw a new wave of immigrants that included numerous artists. Many of the artists settled in New York City and, as the postwar economy in the United States flourished, it became the new center of the art world.

In the canon, or accepted record of art history, the emphasis of postwar American art is given to non-objective and abstract works of art. However, American art in the postwar period did not produce one dominant style or ideological movement. Visual artists continued to push against traditional concepts, building upon the aesthetic ideas of the avant-garde that began at the turn of the 20th century. Representational art, depicting reality, vied with non-objective modes of expression. Some artists advocated for pure abstraction, while others focused on realistic portrayals of man’s humanity. Those numerous artists who continued to work figuratively did not receive the same attention as the more popular and critically acclaimed artists working in the accepted modes. Working in a broad range of styles, both figurative and non-objective, artists continued to explore the notion of “what is art?” and pushed the boundaries of traditional art in content, process, and form.

Funding has been provided by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature.

Gallery Location and Hours

Emily Lowe Gallery
Behind Emily Lowe Hall, South Campus

Tuesday-Friday, 11 a.m.-4 p.m. • Saturday and Sunday, noon-4 p.m.

Download the press release for this exhibitoin here.

Yonia Fain (American, born Russia [now Ukraine], 1913-2013), The Throne, no date, oil on Masonite, 54 1/4 x 48 in., Hofstra University Museum of Art, gift of the artist, HU2012.21

Yonia Fain (American, born Russia [now Ukraine], 1913-2013), The Throne, no date, oil on Masonite, 54 1/4 x 48 in., Hofstra University Museum of Art, gift of the artist, HU2012.21

Related Programs:

Exhibition Reception
Thursday, February 7, 2019 • 4-6 p.m.
Location: Emily Lowe Gallery
Behind Emily Lowe Hall, South Campus
Remarks by Martha Hollander, Professor of Art History, Hofstra University
Free admission. Light refreshments.

PUBLIC PROGRAM:
Musical Performance: Songs of Survival, Hope, and Humanity

Monday, March 11, 2019 • 6:30-8 p.m.
Location: Emily Lowe Gallery
Behind Emily Lowe Hall, South Campus
Program fees apply. Advanced registration is required.

PUBLIC PROGRAM:
International Slow Art Day

Saturday, April 6, 2019 • noon-2 p.m.
Location: Emily Lowe Gallery
Behind Emily Lowe Hall, South Campus
Free Admission. Limited to 15 participants. Advanced registration is required.

PUBLIC PROGRAM:
Yonia Fain: Witness to History (Commemorating Holocaust Remembrance Day)

Wednesday, May 1, 2019 • 4:30-6 p.m.
Location: Emily Lowe Gallery
Behind Emily Lowe Hall, South Campus
Free Admission. Advanced registration is required.

FAMILY FUN with ARTful Adventures:
For children ages 5-10 and their adult companions

Pop Into Spring!
Saturday, May 11, 2019 • 11:30 a.m.-1:00 p.m.

Location: Emily Lowe Gallery
Behind Emily Lowe Hall, South Campus
Program fees apply. Advanced registration is required.


For more information or to register for Museum events please call (516) 463-5672 or click here.


  • Pushing Boundaries: American Art After World War II | January 29-August 16, 2019 |Emily Lowe Gallery, behind Emily Lowe Hall, South Campus
  • Inspiration: Japanese Woodblock Prints | March 26-July 26, 2019 | Joan and Donald E. Axinn Library, Ninth Floor, South Campus