John Sennhauser American, 1907-1978


Sennhauser was born in Switzerland but raised in Italy where he studied for two years at the Royal Academy in Venice before immigrating to the United States in 1928. In New York he studied at the Cooper Union School from 1930 to 1933. He was a teacher at the Leonardo da Vinci Art School and Contemporary School of Art in New York before taking a job at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation in 1943. It was around this time that his paintings began to lean towards abstraction and away from the more representational urban street scenes of his early career.  After two years at the Guggenheim he left and began work in art restoration and became increasingly active in such organizations as American Abstract Artists and the Federation of Modern Painters and Sculptors. Like many of the Abstract Expressionist painters of his time Sennhauser eventually returned to more figurative works in the 1960's. These works were more fluid than the strong geometrical feel of his works from the late 1930's through 1950's.


Contemporary Arts Gallery, New York, 1935 (solo)

Artists’ Gallery, New York, 1947 (solo), 1950, 1952

Zabriskie Gallery, New York, 1956 (solo), 1957, 1959

National Academy of Design, New York, 1935

Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, Philadelphia, 1936, 1952

Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation, New York, 1942, 1943, 1944

Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, 1948, 1950-51, 1953, 1955-56

Corcoran Gallery, Washington, D.C., 1953-55

Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1957

Brooklyn Museum, NY, 1943, 1949, 1951-53

Realities Nouvelles, 5th Salon, Paris, France, 1950

Museo D’Arte Moderna, Rome, Italy, 1950

Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo, Japan, 1955

Museums and Public Collections

Art Institute of Chicago, IL

Carnegie Institute, Pittsburgh, PA

Dallas Museum of Art, TX

Munson-Williams Proctor Arts Institute, Utica, NY

Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, TX

San Diego Museum of Art, CA

Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington, D.C.

Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY

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