Photographs by Stephen Posen

published by Glitterati Incorporated

Exploring photography with a painter’s eye, Stephen Posen has revolved his painting process around the ontology of photography for forty years. In ELLIPSIS: DUAL VISION, his first monograph, the artist comes full circle with a series of 174 paired photographs. 

Blurring the lines between realism and abstraction, Posen uses the photograph as a poet uses the word, each image acting as both the symbol and subject of a larger idea. Teasing elusive connections with his provocative pairs, Posen invites us to participate in the expression of his work and offers a new way of seeing the world, without any preconceived context.

The New York TImes: T Magazine review

Wallpaper* magazine review

DOCUMENT slide show

Art : BOMB On The Scene

The Evolution of Stephen Posen

by Richard J. Goldstein

Contrary to the zeitgeist, Posen chose not to abandon the materiality of paint and illusions of space, a decision based upon a commitment to his training as a painter and questions of representation raised by the Vietnam more



Interview by Tim Goossens, Photography by Andy Ryan

Painter Photographer Stephen Posen's work is an elaborate dance of juxtapositions and the transcendent quality of time.  The artist explains his unique stylistic approach in creating his haunting more


Essay by Dore Ashton

Think of Stephen Posen as Theseus paying out his line, traversing his labyrinth knowing and not knowing what awaits him. Perhaps Posen shares Paul Klee's ambition of 1908 "to note experiences which could translate themselves into line even in absolute darkness." The tacit question is: can a line still be fictive - that is to say, imaginative - in a real space? When certain modernists changed the diction of art schools in the twentieth century, substituting something called "two dimensional design" for the serviceable, old-world "drawing," they erred. Drawing has always been multi-dimensional, since what it figures is movement through space, among many other things. It is always a more


The Drawing Center, New York, 2006

The Drawing Center, New York, 2006

New York, Pragati, 2006

New York, Pragati, 2006

Delphic Dalliance

Essay by Dore Ashton

Wherever I look in Posen's oeuvre, I see him elaborately maneuvering between bounded and unbounded. The challenge of the eternal rectangle, the sheet of paper, incites him to more

Tutelary Sprits & Spatial Ambiguity

Essay by Raphael Rubinstein

Stephen Posen generally begins each of his recent drawings by making a pencil rule line just within the confines of the rectangular paper. As the drawing more



Stephen Posen: New Paintings

Essay by Lauren Sedofsky

When a painter’s assertive force shifts readily from the realm of pure visual experience to direct participation in the major cultural issues of the historical moment, we have a measure of his achievement. The simple trangressiveness of Stephen Posen’s recent paintings goes right to the heart of the matter, for it calls into question the enlightened complacency with which artists and viewers alike have come to accept an environment of appropriative strategies and seemingly endless artistic more

Dialectic in Modernism: The Paintings of Stephen Posen

Art International, vol. 8, December 1979

Alwynne Mackie

Modernism must surely be the most important development in modern art. It must also be the least understood and most abused one, the most common way of apprehending it (especially among critics and art historians) being one which crudely polarizes into abuse or adulation, with each side denying or claiming the seriousness and importance of the art the movement produces. Severe cases of anti-modernism quite often express themselves in what is really a quite different and separate (and to my mind, untenable) distinction, that of form more

Stephen Posen and the Mixed Metaphor

Arts, October 1978

Dore Ashton

Stephen Posen is using two different modes within a single image. In the one, he painstakingly offers a painted simulacrum of a photograph. In the other, he is using oil paint to offer spatial illusions that border on trompe l’oeil.

Stephen Posen’s paintings are like recondite riddles: there is always something of an answer hidden within the works themselves. Their pronounced character derives from the fact that Posen is an adept of the mixed metaphor. One has to speak metaphorically even more

“Posen’s Two Paintings a Year Are Well Worth Waiting For”

The New York Times, Sunday, September 21, 1975

By John Canaday

For anyone interested in the current realistic redirection of American Art, the prospect of seeing two new paintings by Stephen Posen in a forthcoming group show at the O.K. Harris Gallery in SoHo should be assurance that the movement is still valid in spite of the abuses to which it has been more


The Structuralists: Stephen Posen and Zac Posen

Whitewall, Fall 2008

Zac Posen, fashion designer, experienced the unique advantage of growing up watching his father, artist Stephen Posen, construct massive still lifes that mixed cloth, photo images, and paint. The question remains, "What came first, the chicken or the egg?" more

FLATT: Issue #6

The Posens: A Family Affair

FLATT Editor at Large, Nico Iliev had the chance to sit with one of Manhattan's most charming and visionary families, the Posens.  Stephen and Susan parents to Alexandra and Zac, collective share thoughts about their creative beginnings, artistic process and the power of raising a family with love and more

Stephen Posen Knows How to Fashion a Line. So Does His Son, Zac Posen.

The New York Times, Tuesday, May 1, 2018

By Ted Loos

For the artist Stephen Posen, the 1960s were promising indeed. He was a kid from St. Louis who went to Yale and impressed people with his painting ability, coming of age alongside schoolmates who were future art stars: Richard Serra, Chuck Close, and Brice Marden .…read more

Stephen Posen’s Radical Return

Cultured Magazine, Thursday, June 14, 2018

By Charlotte Burns

Most people’s storage units contain dusty furniture or outdated clothing with outgrown waistlines. But when artist Stephen Posen rummaged through his storage space, he uncovered a trove of his radical early canvases buried deep within. The works are now on view at Vito Schnabel Projects in New York and will be on view at his St. Moritz gallery….read more

Vito Schnabel Projects, 2018

Vito Schnabel Projects, 2018

Stephen Posen: Paintings from the 1960s and ‘70s

Essay by Alex Bacon

In the mid-twentieth century the photograph was a physical entity. Starting life in the camera as an impression on a strip of film, the photograph became formalized in the darkroom as a print on paper, executed at a certain size, through the application of particular techniques….read more

Zac Posen Shares How His Father’s Art Inspired His Career

Galerie Magazine, Wednesday, September 11, 2019

 Stephen PosenUntitled, 1970Oil on canvas80h x 76w x 2d in203.20h x 193.04w x 5.08d cmPOSS_0022Photo by Argenis Apolinario

My father made this work early in his career. Growing up, I wasn’t even aware of these paintings, but the fabric and materials he used to build the models were incorporated into my play things as a kid. Then, when I first started making clothing, it was out of the same remnants….read more