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Acquisition: Shirley Gorelick, the Brooklyn Museum

Shirley Gorelick, Family II, 1973

We are pleased to announce that Shirley Gorelick’s Family II (1973) has been acquired by the Brooklyn Museum as part of the museum’s permanent collection.

Shirley Gorelick (1924–2000) was an American artist who worked in a distinctive realist mode, creating penetrating psychological portraiture, often on a large scale. She earned her B.A. at Brooklyn College (1944), where she studied under Serge Chermayeff, and her M.A. at Teachers College, Columbia University (1947). She briefly studied with Hans Hofmann in Provincetown.

In Family II, as well as her painting Family I, Shirley Gorelick depicts Libby Dickerson, who was a frequent model, with her husband and teenage children. Boris Ourlicht, who was a Jew of Polish descent, met Dickerson in 1947 in the Bronx at the United Workers Cooperative Colony, known as “the Coops,” where they both lived. Their relationship began two decades before Loving v. Virginia (1967), the landmark civil rights case in which the Supreme Court of the United States found race-based marriage restrictions to be unconstitutional.

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