About Edvins

Edvins Strautmanis was born in Latvia in 1933 and after World War II emigrated with his family to Chicago in 1950.

Strautmanis graduated from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and began exhibiting in 1965. After an exploratory hard-edge period in Chicago, working on paintings, sculptures and monotypes, Strautmanis found himself drawn to the New York art scene.

In 1971, Strautmanis moved to the East coast as so many of his peers had before him, such as Kline, DeKooning and Pollock who had helped set the stage for the abstract expressionist movement in the 1950's. 

Despite having arrived late to the party, it was Strautmanis who still made the grandest of entrances with his large-scale action paintings.

Standing above his canvases and working downward; Strautmanis used gallons upon gallons of still-wet paint; pushing, raking, mopping and slamming down his giant homemade tools to create his saturated and dynamic surfaces. Harking the visceral iconology of such classic masters as Van Gogh and Goya, Strautmanis used raw powerful and deliberate movements of his entire body to create pieces that are looming in stature, architectural in composition, which toe line of refinement and chaos, not unlike the very ethos of New York City itself.

As engaged as Strautmanis was over his canvas, he was just as active in the New York City art scene. 

The SoHo loft/studio where he lived and worked became a meeting place where he and his fellow contemporaries would gather to discuss art, each others shows, what art critics were saying and the direction these like-minded creatives where taking in their own artistic pursuits. These gatherings were, for the artists establishing themselves, akin to peer review. Strautmanis participated in many group shows as well as more than a hundred solo shows throughout his life.

Strautmanis' paintings are included in many notable collections, including the Minneapolis Institute of Arts, the Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Cornell University, the Phoenix Museum of Art, the Ringling Museum of Art in Sarasota Florida, the Kunsthaus in Zurich and the Latvian Museum of Art in Riga, Latvia.

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Cesis Art Festival — 2019

In July 2019, The National Art Museum of Latvia organized the Close-Up Exhibition in Cesis, Latvia.

This first-ever retrospective of Edvins Strautmanis in his native country showcases a scope of work never before shown, and depicts the most significant and creative period of the artists’ career

View Gallery

Exhibitions & Collections

1996- Staller Center for the Arts, Stony Brook, NY

1994- Stephen Rosenburg Gallery, NYC

1994- Kunst-Museum, Ahlen, Germany

1992- Jahnhorst and Preuss, Berlin, Germany

1991- Stephen Rosenburg Gallery, NYC

1991- Galerie Metta Linde, Lubeck, Germany

1990- Stephen Rosenberg Gallery, NYC

1987- OK Harris Gallery, NYC

1987- Galerie Sylvia Menzel, Berlin, Germany

1987- Galerie Brigitta Jacob, Oldenburg, Germany

1987- United States Mission, Berlin, Germany

1986- John Guggenheim Gallery, Miami, Fl

1986- Benson gallery, Southampton, NY

1985- Bockley Gallery, Minneapolis, MN

1984- Reynold C. Kerr Gallery, NYC

1984- Jeremy Stone Gallery, San Francisco, CA

1983- The Grayson Gallery, Chicago, IL

1982- Allan Stone Gallery, NYC

1980- Allan Stone Gallery, NYC

1979- Samuel Stein Fine Arts, Chicago, IL

1979- Walter Kelly Gallery, Chicago, IL

1977- Allan Stone Gallery, NYC

1975- Allan Stone Gallery, NYC

1974- Isis Gallery, Notre Dame University, IN

1973- Walter Kelly Gallery, Chicago, IL

1973- LoGiudice Gallery, NYC

1970- LoGiudice Gallery, NYC

1965- University of Chicago, IL

2002- Abstraction, Allan Stone Gallery, New York, NY

1997- One of A Kind, Rosenberg + Kaufman Gallery, New York, NY

1995- Rigas Galeriga, Riga, Latvia

1993- The Tenth Summer, Stephen Rosenberg Gallery, New York, NY

1993- Jahnhorst and Preuss, Berlin, Germany

1991- Paper Trail, Stephen Rosenberg Gallery, New York, NY

1990- The Art Studio, New York, NY

1989- Anita Shapolsky Gallery, New York, NY

1988- Noordkunst, Groningen Museum, Denmark

1987- Kouros Gallery, New York, NY

1986- Benton Gallery, Southampton, NY

1985- Five New York Expressionists, Newton Arts Center, Newton, MA

1985- Advanced Abstraction, Burke Gallery, New York, NY

1983- Swen Parson Gallery, Northern Illinois University, De Kalb, IL

1983-Stephen Rosenberg Gallery, New York, NY

1978- Abstract Expressionism and Its Disciples, Allan Stone Gallery, New York, NY

1976- Governors State University, Park Forest South, IL

1976- Dart Gallery, Chicago, IL

1974- Painting and Sculpture Today, Indianapolis Museum of Art, Indianapolis, IN

1974- Allan Stone Gallery, New York, NY

1970- Society for Contemporary Art, The Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, IL

1968- Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY

1968- State Museum of Natural History and Art, Springfield, IL

1968- Five Abstractionists, Main Street Gallery, Chicago, IL

1968- Painting: Off the Wall, Des Moines Art Center, IA

1966- Noah Goldowsky Gallery, New York, NY

1965- Society for Contemporary Art, The Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, IL

1964- Contemporary Latvian Painters, Herron Museum of Art, Indianapolis, IN

1964- 7’and Up, DePaul University, Chicago, IL

1964- Hyde Park Art Center, Chicago, IL

1962- 12 Chicago Artists, McCormick Place Gallery, Chicago, IL

Chase Manhattan Bank, New York, NY

AT&T Company, New York, NY

HMH Publishing Company, Chicago, IL

Houstonic Museum of Art, Bridgeport, CT

Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art, Ithaca, NY

Kunsthaus, Zurich, Switzerland

Latvian State Museum of Art, Riga, Latvia

The Sydney and Francis Lewis Foundation, VA

Minneapolis Institute of Arts, Minneapolis, MN

Newark Museum, Newark, NJ

Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, IL

Phoenix Museum of Art, Phoenix, AZ

Ringling Museum of Art, Sarasota, FL

St. Mary’s College of Art, MD

University Art Center, Rutgers State University, NJ


Edvins Strautmanis, Abstract Painter, 58. The New York Times.

Stony Brook University Catalog. SUNY Stony Brook [PDF].

Nathan Manilow Sculpture Park Collection.Public Art in Chicago.

Cēsis Art Festival 2019. Art Territory.

Roberta Pancoast Smith on Edvins Strautmanis. Art Forum.

Video & Other Media

Portrait of a Painter

A narrated film by Michel Auder showing Strautmanis at work in his SOHO studio. Made in 1983 when Strautmanis was at the peak of his career the brief narrated film includes a tour of the artist's SOHO loft.

Images/Art New York

An extended interview, a tour of the artist's SOHO studio and unique footage of Strautmanis at work. Produced and Directed by Bill Page for New York One.

SUNY Stony Brook - 1996

An overview of Strautmanis' 1996 exhibition at the State University of New York, Stony Brook.