History, Art & Culture

Rappaport Prize

Since its inception in 2000, the Rappaport Prize has been an investment in both individual artists and the broader art community.

22nd Annual Rappaport Prize

Katherine Bradford is the 2021 recipient of the Rappaport Prize. Bradford (b. 1942, New York, NY), whose career now spans six decades, is known for her luminous paintings that merge an abstracted style with representational motifs. The paintings often depict ambiguous subjects in fugue landscapes—outer space, the ocean, the clouds—with references to Superman, Albert Pinkham Ryder’s nocturnal paintings, and Mark Rothko’s floating color blocks. On November 3, 2021, Bradford delivered the annual Rappaport Prize Lecture, discussing her career, and the inspiration behind her work:

The Rappaport Prize Lecture with Katherine Bradford took place Wednesday, November 3.

About the Artist

Katherine Bradford (b. 1942, New York, NY; lives in New York, NY and Brunswick, ME) started painting at the age of thirty while living in Maine and was among the group of artists who moved to Williamsburg, Brooklyn in the 1980s. Bradford has exhibited widely at institutions such as MoMA PS1, New York; the Brooklyn Museum; the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth, TX; Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, Bentonville, AR; the Frances Young Tang Teaching Museum, Skidmore College, NY; and the Ogden Museum of Southern Art, New Orleans, as part of the fourth Prospect New Orleans Triennial. Her work is included in collections such as the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; the Brooklyn Museum; the Dallas Museum of Art; the Menil Collection, Houston; the Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art, Overland Park, KS; and the Portland Museum of Art, ME. Her work has been shown at galleries including: Canada, Sperone Westwater, and Pace Gallery in New York; Campoli Presti Gallery, London and Paris; Philipp Haverkampf Galerie, Berlin; and Adams and Ollman, Portland, OR, among others. Bradford is the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship and a Joan Mitchell Grant. She has taught at institutions such as the Yale School of Art, Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, and the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia. A recent monograph, Katherine Bradford: Paintings, was published by Canada in 2018. In September a two-person exhibition from Bradford and Diedrick Brackens opens at the Carpenter Center for the Visual Arts at Harvard. In 2022, Bradford will be the subject of a touring retrospective organized by the Portland Museum of Art in Maine.

About the Rappaport Prize

Created in 2000 and endowed in 2010, the Rappaport Prize is an annual art award presented by deCordova through the generosity of the Phyllis and Jerome Lyle Rappaport Foundation.

Past Rappaport Recipients


Speaking our Minds

View the December 10, 2020 panel moderated by Sarah Montross and featuring four Rappaport Prize Recipients

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