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The Art - Your Guide to Modern Art

Movements Artists Timelines Ideas Blog
About Us

About The Art Story

We are here to demystify Modern Art. Modern Art is about ideas, and we want to expose those ideas to the world.

The organization and team

The Art Story Foundation is an educational 501(c)(3) non-profit organization established in 2009. The organization is led by 4 senior personnel that are responsible for the everyday management and long-term planning. A staff of approximately 12 freelancers include content writers and researchers, art professors, graphic artists, and programmers that continue to create and publish content on a regular basis.

Founding principles

"The Art Story Foundation is the result of my interest in trying to understand the art that was all around me. After developing a serious interest in learning about modern art, I found the available sources of information too limited. Many excellent art books are too narrow in their scope, and are hard to reconcile with each other. Online, it was nearly impossible to find quality information that is organized in a consistent manner."
"I believe the Internet is the medium that can address all these problems, and bring art education into the 21st century. This website, and the Foundation as a whole, strive to achieve this goal."
- Michael Zurakhinsky
- Founder

Our Approach

Modern art is a period of art making that has been analyzed in hundreds of different ways by numerous talented individuals. Another page that overviews the work of Picasso is not a very valuable contribution to the field of art education. After 6 years of daily work on writing, analyzing, and publishing analysis pages on artists, movements and ideas, The Art Story has a fairly good grasp of our organizational purpose and reason for being.

What is Modern Art

We define modern art as the history of artistic achievements in the age of modernism, approximately between the years of 1850 and 1980.

In particular:
history: just as there is the history of the world, we discuss the particular settings surrounding developments in the arts
artistic achievements: similar to physics, where one scientist makes a breakthrough upon which future scientists build upon, we approach art as the progression of artistic discoveries.

Our method

Every one of our topic pages is meant to be an analysis that would convince the most passionate skeptic in the importance of the particular artist, movement, and idea they are reading. This is the mission that we strive for in the daily publication process and with every logical argument, artist quote, or supporting resource.

In addition, as we aim to bring the arts to a broad audience, we make sure that every page is complete in itself. Each idea is developed clearly, succinctly, and without reliance on fancy art terms or "advanced" concepts.

Now that you have insight into the purpose of The Art Story, please visit the hundreds of pages we have published on our website and please comment where we are successful, and more importantly, where we need to work further. If you agree with our approach and want to see us succeed, please recommend us to your friends.

Why You Should Support the Art Story

Every minute, over 1,000,000 people around the world are exposed to Modern Art only to be mystified by what they see. Why?! Because the Modern Art museums, books, and websites do not explain the art.

That's why The Art Story Foundation’s vision is a world where the ideas and aspirations behind the wonderous modern works are accessible to anyone to explore and be inspired by. We invite you to partner with us in fulfilling that vision.

We are the only organization that streamlines premier quality art information free of charge - in a way that speaks and connects with today's world. Our dedicated staff of content writers and researchers, art professors, graphic artists and programmers help over 8 million people each year understand and enjoy every style of modern art from Impressionism to Performance art, and our international audience is growing by over 100% per year.

The appreciation of these inspiring works by current and future generations is in your hands. Without your generous support, people all over the world will have no choice but to continue to struggle to understand Modern Art. For only $36, YOU can make sure this never happens. Together we can ensure that everyone’s life can be infused with the beauty of art.

Please invest in Modern Art by making a meaningful donation.

Management team

Morgan Falconer - Senior Writer and Editor
Morgan Falconer is a freelance critic, journalist and lecturer. Since completing a PhD on American modernist culture, he has written about contemporary art for publications throughout the world. His writing appears regularly in the Times (London), Frieze, Art in America, and the Burlington Magazine. He is currently writing a guide to art in New York, to be published by Rizzoli (New York) and Thames & Hudson (London) in 2011. Morgan is also writing a book on the history of painting since 1945, for Phaidon. Falconer joined The Art Story because it echoes his interest in making modern and contemporary art accessible to a wide audience.
Alan Goldstein - Member of the Board of Directors
Alan Goldstein is President of The Computer Studio, a software, marketing and web development firm in Yonkers, NY, which he founded in 1986. He has a Masters degree in Engineering from the City University of New York and an MBA from New York University, and an avid interest in art and design. With his extensive professional background in marketing communications and in developing intuitive, user-friendly user interfaces, Mr. Goldstein has helped guide the design and functionality of The Art Story products as well as the overall direction of the Foundation.
Michael Zurakhinsky - Founder and President
Michael Zurakhinsky is a graduate of Manhattan College, with an MBA from New York University. His background includes extensive experience in web technology, business and finance and a passion for art and literature. Michael has traveled extensively, and brings to The Art Story a deep appreciation and broad understanding of modern art. He was motivated to start the Art Story Foundation as a result of his personal frustration with the existing resources covering modern and contemporary art.



Justin Wolf
Justin Wolf has a BA from the University of Missouri and a Masters in Liberal Studies from The New School for Social Research. His background includes extensive work in urban education, modern art, criticism, creative non-fiction and editing. Since joining The Art Story in February 09, Wolf has been integral in building the site's sections on modern art theory, galleries, and other entities that he feels are often overlooked in the canon of Abstract Expressionism. But above all, he's proud to be a part of something that celebrates the myriad complexities of modern art through such a comprehensive lens.
Jen Farren
Jen is an art historian with a M.A. and 15 years of experience working as an investigator, sourcing textual and visual material from archives, museums, private collections, historic newspapers and out-of-print books. She conducts freelance research for educational and heritage projects, film and theatre. Jen loves to find fascinating visuals to illustrate concepts, and uncover insights that make new connections between artists and ideas. She writes about art and culture and her interests span the 20-21st century.
Jessica DiPalma
Jessica DiPalma is a writer and art consultant based in Buffalo, New York. She has lectured and written extensively about modern and contemporary art. With a decade of experience working in the art museum field, including museum education, she brings to The Art Story a passion for making art accessible and engaging for people of all ages. She holds a Master’s degree in Art History and a Juris Doctor from the University at Buffalo.
Laura Mychal Fiesel
Laura Mychal Fiesel is an artist and art educator working out of Tucson, AZ. She holds a BA from Mills College in Studio Arts, and an MA in Art and Visual Culture Education from the University of Arizona. Her art and pedagogical approach focuses on place-based and environmental art. Her sculptures explore these themes, by utilizing found and reclaimed materials, while her paintings explore a nature inspired abstraction. She has taught in diverse communities abroad and at home, and continues to expand her audience with a desire to make art more accessible for all.
Linnea West
Linnea West received her M.A. in Art History from The University of Georgia in May 2015, where she focused on modern and contemporary art. She is a freelance writer and editor with a background in book publishing as well as a curator and art blogger. Particular areas of interest include socially engaged art and the art of Central and Eastern Europe. In 2012-13, she researched contemporary Hungarian art and national identity at the Ludwig Museum of Contemporary Art, Budapest on a Fulbright grant. She is currently based in Brooklyn, NY.
Rachel Cohen
Rachel Cohen is a writer, artist, and art advisor located in Brooklyn, NY. She received a BA in English from Wesleyan University, and an MA in Art Therapy from Pratt Institute. Her master’s thesis served as the basis for her first book, focused on placing art brut within a larger art historical context, and she is currently working on her second book, exploring cultural products from India in the 1960s-1980s. Cohen is the founder of NAPlabs, an art advisory service dedicated to researching and promoting work from non-traditional contexts of creation. Previously, she managed a studio and gallery for artists with developmental disabilities.
Stephanie Buhmann
Stephanie Buhmann was born in Hamburg, Germany. She received a B.F.A. and Masters in the History of Art, Architecture and Design from Pratt Institute, New York, with Honors (2012). She is a member of the Association Internationale des Critiques d'Art and the Deutscher Fachjournalisten-Verband. She is a contributing editor at Artcritical. Her essays and art reviews have been published by a large variety of international galleries, newspapers, and art magazines. The latter include Kunst Bulletin, Sculpture Magazine, The Brooklyn Rail, ARTPulse, Art on Paper, Art Papers, Art Collector and Art Lies, among others. She has a regular art column in Chelsea Now. Several of her texts have been translated into German and Italian. In addition, she has translated numerous museum catalogue essays, including for the Guggenheim Museum in Venice, Italy (2014) and Museum Pfalzgalerie Kaiserslautern, Germany (2013). She has received a Kress Foundation Fellowship (2002) and an Archive- and Library Stipend from the Arp Foundation (2015).
Rachel Gershman
Rachel Gershman is a writer, editor and art collections management consultant based in New York City. She holds an M.A. degree in Museum Studies from Columbia University, where she also earned her B.A. degree. Her work with The Art Story expands on her M.A. thesis, which explored methods for making art more accessible to wider audiences. Rachel also brings to The Art Story her long-standing interest in contemporary art and her years spent working in arts publicity.
Elizabeth Fazzare
Elizabeth Fazzare is an arts journalist, currently earning her B.A. in Art History, Journalism, and Urban Design and Architecture Studies at New York University. Her interest in the artistic world was borne out of a family trip to the Charles and Ray Eames-designed case study house. Since then a self-proclaimed case of wanderlust took her to Europe, where she furthered her studies on contemporary art and social structure. She brings to The Art Story a love for avant-garde modernism, a background in art criticism, and a penchant for witty headlines. She has also written about architecture, art, and culture for The Architect's Newspaper, Architizer, and Art in America.
Diana L. Linden
Diana L. Linden received her PhD in Art History from CUNY-The Graduate Center and her MA in Art History from Williams College where she was selected as the best graduate student. She has both published and lectured widely on American art, African American art, Public Art, and Museum Studies. She has taught at Pomona College, Pitzer College, the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor, and the University of Southern California. Her book The New Deal Murals of Ben Shahn: Jewish Identity in the American Scene will be published Oct. 2015. Diana has been awarded prestigious fellowships from the Getty Institute and the University of Pennsylvania, among others. Diana currently resides in Claremont, CA.
Ivan Savvine
Ivan Savvine has recently earned his Master's degree in Art History from Syracuse University. Born and raised in Saint-Petersburg, Russia, Mr. Savvine studied Linguistics and British-American Literature before pursuing his graduate studies in the history of art. An inveterate enthusiast of Russian Modernism, he brings to The Art Story a thorough understanding of the groundbreaking avant-garde artists often overlooked in the critical understanding of modern art. Based in New York City, Mr. Savvine pursues various freelance writing projects focusing on the theory of architecture and the Russian and German art of the 1920's.
Katlyn Beaver
Kate Beaver holds a MA in Art History from the University of Oregon and a BA in History from Boston College. Her research areas span 20-21st century visual art and digital culture, specializing in modernism in Latin America and contemporary curatorial studies. Kate currently researches the use of digital scholarship to enhance learning and instruction of art historical topics, and brings to the Art Story a professional background as an instructor of art history in both museum and university settings. She is currently based in San Diego, CA.
Janet Oh
Janet Oh is a writer and programming curator in Brooklyn, New York. She received her MA in Modern Art: Curatorial Studies from Columbia University and BA in Art History and Music from Northwestern University. From 2010-13 she managed the performance and lecture series at the Art Institute of Chicago, and previously held positions and internships at the Metropolitan Museum, Whitney Museum, Block Museum, and MCA Chicago. Informed by her lifelong experience in the performing arts, her writing frequently delves into the performative in contemporary art.
Magali An Berthon
Magali An Berthon is a French-Vietnamese freelance writer, designer and independent researcher. She also produces short documentaries on textile crafts and traditions from all over the world. Born in Montreal, Canada, she grew up in France, and is now based in Brooklyn, NY. Her particular research areas span history of design, textiles and crafts. Her interests also include 20-21st century painting and Asian art. She received her MFA in Textile Design from the National School of Decorative Arts in Paris and her BA in Visual Communication from National School of Applied Arts Paris. A 2014-2015 Fulbright laureate, she followed the Fashion and Textile Studies: History, Theory and Museum Practices MA at the Fashion Institute of Technology of New York.
Kimberly Henderson
Kimberly Henderson is a freelance writer and mixed media artist based in Harlem, NY. She received her B.A in Studio Art -- minoring in Art History, Women and Gender Studies and Psychology -- in 2013 from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. She is currently a freelance writer and the Office Coordinator for This American Life, PBC and Serial Podcast. Prior to moving to New York, she was the Program Associate at McColl Center for Art + Innovation, one of the leading artist residency centers in the country. Her art endeavors center around modern and contemporary art.
Jen Glennon
Jen Glennon is a writer, editor, and researcher based in New York City. She holds a D.Phil. from the University of Oxford and a B.A. from the University of California, Berkeley. Her work with The Art Story builds upon her research, which focuses on transatlantic dialogues in visual art and literature in the early twentieth century. Having taught at the University of Oxford and the University of London, she is committed to making art and literature approachable and inspiring for a wide audience.

Audience Development

Marina Imberg
Marina Imberg specializes in non-profit community work with children, families, and young adults. Marina was born and raised in Ukraine, studied Business Management in Brooklyn College and got her Masters Degree in Education from Fordham University. She joined the Art Story in 2012, bringing her knowledge and experience with non-profit organizations to fulfill her desire to inspire more individuals to appreciate the arts.

Graphic Designers

Thomas Reczek
Thomas Reczek is a freelance Art Director/Graphic Designer with over 25 years of print and web design experience. He has a BFA in Design Graphics from the New York Institute of Technology and has been the creator of many interactive and functional websites and technology platforms. Mr. Reczek leads graphic design at The Art Story, and has been an integral part of the team that started the foundation.


Alexander Grevtsev
Alexander Grevtsev is a programmer with eight-year experience of developing, maintaining and supporting business applications for desktop, web and mobile systems. He has a degree in Applied Mathematics from Voronezh State University, Russia. Alexander is fond of Impressionist artists and has been helping The Art Story from the beginnings of the initiative in 2009.

Expert supporters and specialized contributors

Ellen Hurst
Ellen Hurst has a PhD in art history from the CUNY Graduate Center. Her graduate research focused on global interaction in the early modern period, specifically between the areas that now constitute Eastern Europe and Italy. She continues to explore these issues, as well as global exchange in contemporary art. Based in Seattle, she works full-time as a writer and editor. For more information about her work, and for examples of her writing, visit
Sandy McCain
Sandy McCain has a Ph.D. in Art History from the University of Georgia, where her research focused on American Art, particularly art of the American South. She continues to write and publish on southern artists, although her interest extends into European and Modern art, as well as African American art. In addition to working as a freelance researcher and writer, Sandy also enjoys teaching in a classroom setting. She is currently based in Baltimore, MD.
Tom Head
Tom Head holds a Ph.D. in religion and society from Edith Cowan University and an M.A. in humanities from California State University, Dominguez Hills, and has written or co-written 28 nonfiction books on a wide range of topics. He is an award-winning contributing writer for the Jackson Free Press and a blogger for numerous platforms, including, Mysterious Universe, and Hopes&Fears. His work focuses on the history of ideas and the sometimes unlikely relationships between them. He lives and works in his hometown of Jackson, Mississippi, where he serves on the boards of several area nonprofits and occasionally teaches informal classes on topics that align with his research interests. He can be found on the web at

Alistair Rider
Alistair Rider is a Lecturer in Art History at the University of St Andrews. He received his PhD from the University of Leeds, and was a research fellow at the University of York for two years before moving to Scotland. He teaches classes on modern sculpture, critical theory, New York modernism and experimental art of the 1960s. In 2006 he helped edit an anthology of art criticism on Carl Andre (About Carl Andre: Critical Writings since 1965). He has also written a monograph on Andre, which is due to be published by Phaidon Press in 2011. Currently, he is working on two separate research projects. The first is a study of artists from the 1960s and 1970s who have devoted entire careers to a single, ongoing project, and the second is an examination of contemporary art practices that explore environmental and ecological themes without invoking traditional concepts of 'nature'.

Dr. Rider's recent book, About Carl Andre: Critical Texts Since 1965, is available currently at

Alistair Rider has contributed the Carl Andre artist page to The Art Story Foundation.

Stephen Knudsen
Stephen Knudsen has taught University painting, color and design theory, and critical art theory, for 19 years. Knudsen is has an M.F.A. in painting along with a biology degree and has also taught Chemistry and Biology. He has published ground-breaking color theory and has developed the Knudsen Dual Color Wheel used in universities across the country. He has also revised Monroe Beardsley's aesthetics in an essay that is used widely across the campus at the Savannah College Of Art And Design, where he is currently professor of painting. He is a contrubutor to Art Calendar Magazine, ArtPulse Magazine, The SECAC Review Journal, Professional Artist Magazine, Chicago Arts Magazine,, and he exhibits his work internationally.

Recent work and published essays can be seen at

Stevek Knudsen contributed the Gustave Courbet artist page to the Art Story Foundation.

Site Notes

The below notes deal with miscellaneous topics related to this website and The Art Story Foundation as a whole.

A note on simplifying art history

Although the creators of understand that breaking down movements and influences into simple statements is a form of simplification, we believe that this step is a required one to make the complex concepts in Modern art palatable for the larger audience that this website is trying to accommodate. Users with advanced understanding of Modern art may find the breakdowns too general, but for those people the website offers further in-depth analysis and references to original sources.

A note on viewing reproductions online

Whenever we look at web images of artworks, it is important to remember that much of the effect that these images have is completely lost when viewed on our computer monitor. This is invariably the case with Abstract Expressionist works where the size, color and surface are key to the appreciation and the experience. Please do not forget this at any point while using this site.

Why is not written more academically, with citations, bibliographies, etc?

The goal of our organization is to introduce the arts, and art history to a broad audience. We believe that technical writing, including extra terms and citations take away from the reader's experience. We attempt to be as friendly and as aesthetically pleasing as possible. The problem in maintaining interested readers is further amplified on the internet, where our audience's ability to read off the screen and overall length of attention span is generally limited.

Some People Say This About The Art Story:

"I love your site. I am a high school Drawing/Painting teacher. We use your site for quick info that helps my students understand art. Drawing/Painting is a "required" elective so most of my students are just starting the creative process. We write about and produce art so your site is step one in the creative process: see what's out there, see what's been done, and add your creative twist to it. Thanks for your hard work. It makes my job easier."
- Pat, May 2015

"I have so enjoyed this site as I begin on my journey in college. Thank you all so much for giving of yourselves in this site."
- Corrine, September 2014

"Seriously great website!! Biographies, quotes, influences from other artists, timelines, links to other websites.. Could not wish for anything more! Thank you very much :) Greetings from Holland"
- Tessa, November 2012

"Excellent work -- I am sending my students to you!"
- Frenchy, October 2012

"You helped research for my tattoo, i love the art nouveau era, such beauty."
- Riqi, September 2012

"Great story, reading it is like playing Roulette and winning each time the wheel stops."
- Roy, August 2012

"Always new ideas to think through. This is why I search for answers to questions I didn't even have a thought about. I like this site because it is the facts that are important much more than pushing one artist over another, giving all their 15 minutes of glory. I search every late night when sleep is still a distant reality, it gives me new ideas in which I later will convert to paintings. And isn't that what Art is all about, pushing what you think into new and unexpected. directions. This why Abstract Expressionism touched my soul and left an incredible point of view. Keep pushing yourself to go one better."
- Harvey, June 2012

"a serendipitous journey: I googled up the movie Freaks, was reminded how I favor the MGM logo, looked the significance of Ars Gratia Artis which led me here...a discussion on art. Art for Art's sake."
- Beatrice, November 2011

"of course, Rothko would hate this type of analysis and boiled down biography of his life and work. but still, something to consider."
- Bryan, November 2011

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