ILLINOIS HISTORICAL ART PROJECT
IVAN LE LORRAINE ALBRIGHT was born in Chicago on February 20, 1897, and studied at Northwestern University, the University of Illinois, the Art Institute of Chicago, the National Academy of Design in New York, the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts and the Ecole des Beaux Arts of Nantes, France. He has painted in all parts of the United States and has exhibited in the Carnegie International, the Pan-American International, the Corcoran Bi-Annual in Washington, D. C., the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, the National Academy of Design in New York, the Art Institute of Chicago, the Detroit Institute, the Whitney Museum of Modern Art in New York and in other galleries and museums throughout the country. One man exhibitions of his work have been held at the Walden-Dudensing Galleries in Chicago and the Art Institute of Chicago. He was awarded the John C. Shafer prize of $500.00 at the Art Institute of Chicago in 1928, the Chicago Society of Artists Silver Medal in 1930 and the Chicago Society of Artists Gold Medal in 1931. He is a member of the Fellowship of the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, the Chicago Society of Artists, the Association of Painters and Sculptors, the Laguna Beach Art Association and the Art Institute of Chicago Alumni Association, and is represented in the permanent collections of the Milwaukee Art Institute and the Hackley Gallery of Fine Art in Muskegon, Michigan. His work has been written about in the Art Digest, the American Magazine of Art and various other magazines and newspapers.
We think of people as material beings. But the body is merely an outward or external shell. The ego, the essential ego, is what one is in ultimate reality. It is to suggest that that I give to my paintings such titles as "Into The World There Came A Soul Called Ida." Realism is nothing more than a term. And so for that matter are impressionism, expressionism, romanticism, classicism, symbolism and so forth. All terms are comparative. The physical and objective looked into deeply enough become spiritual and subjective and abstract. What I mean is that every person sees things in a way unique and peculiar to himself. Much has been made of the idea that all of nature reduces itself to a few forms. But that does not seem to me to be altogether true, and to the extent to which it is true it is not very significant. There is no third dimension in plain reality. All that we perceive is a world of surfaces. The real center is never seen. But it is just that which the artist should strive to find and body forth. I try to reach the essential and to give it form-to express it. Paradoxical as it may sound when placed alongside some of my foregoing statements, I avoid identifying myself with objects when painting. I think of glass as glass and wood as wood. The result in painting may be an expression of the race or people from which one springs; the conscious aim, it seems to me, should not be that. My choice of color is not conscious; or rather, I should say, it is not studied. I use such color as I seem to need. I work a long time on my paintings. I devoted thirteen months to a single composition. It took that long to get what I was after. I build its portions separately before putting each in its place in the organic whole. The religious emotion in its pure form enters into my work. Everything profound in life branches from, or is related to, the religious emotion in its pure form.