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About Us


The Art Story is an educational 501(c)(3) non-profit organization founded in 2009 to demystify Modern Art and further art appreciation.

Michael Zurakhinsky - Founder and President

"After developing a serious interest in understanding and appreciating Modern Art, I found the available sources of information far too limited. Many excellent art books are too narrow in their scope, and are hard to reconcile with each other. On the internet, it was nearly impossible to find quality information organized in a consistent manner."

"I believe the internet can help us address all these issues, and bring art education into the 21st century. Modern Art is about ideas that should be exposed to the world, and this website and the organization as a whole strive to achieve this goal."
- Michael Zurakhinsky (Founder)


The art world is organized and run by professionals that sometimes don't take the time to address the needs of non-experts, which is the majority of the world. That's why The Art Story Foundation's vision is a world where the ideas and aspirations behind the wondrous modern works are accessible to anyone to explore and be inspired by.

We streamline quality art information consistently, across hundreds of discussions about artists, movements, and art ideas. Moreover, The Art Story is available on every computer and mobile device completely free of charge.

Modern art is a period of art making that has been analyzed in hundreds of different ways by numerous talented individuals. Another page that discusses the work of Picasso may not, in itself, comprise a very valuable addition to the field of art education. The work The Art Story performs goes well beyond that, presenting the entire body of Modern Art. We make it easy for people new to the field to quickly grasp the main concepts, and then drill down to detailed information on areas that interest them.


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

Just as there is the history of the world, we discuss the particular settings surrounding historical developments in the arts. And similarly to physics, where one scientist builds on the breakthroughs of others, we approach art as a progression of artistic discoveries.

Every one of our topic pages is designed to convince a complete skeptic of the importance of the particular artist, movement or idea it covers. Each idea is presented clearly, succinctly, and without reliance on specialized art terms or "advanced" concepts, making Modern Art both accessible and digestible for all.

These Art Story values and concepts are reflected in every logical argument, artist quote, or supporting resource throughout our website. The content grows every week, is read by over 9 million internet visitors per year, and continues to attract more and more people to Modern Art.




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 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 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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Jackie Meade
Jackie Meade holds a Master's degree in Art History from Montana State University and a Bachelor's degree in History from the University of Montana. Her area of interest and research includes European and American painting and photography from the 19th through 21st centuries. Jackie taught Art History survey courses covering prehistory to contemporary art as a graduate student. During this time, Jackie also worked at various modern and contemporary art museums and local art galleries. Her Art Story pages explore modern photography and her passion to make all artistic mediums relevant to the greater dialogue of society, culture, and history.
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.
Katelyn Davis
Katelyn Davis is a freelance writer and art professional with over ten years of experience working for a contemporary art auction house, blue chip gallery, and art museum. She holds a M.A. in Art History, focusing on 20th and 21st century art, and was awarded an academic scholarship for her writing during her graduate studies. More recently, she was the Studio Manager for the artist, Caio Fonseca and Estate Manager of his father's work. She is based in New York City, where she pursues her passion of working with artists and writing about the modern and contemporary art that inspires her.
Nicole Georgopulos
Nicole Georgopulos is a PhD Candidate in Art History and Criticism at Stony Brook University, where she teaches on modern art in a global context. Her research focuses on French painting and drawing of the mid-nineteenth century, particularly discourses of Realism, theories of embodiment, and the intersections of art, science, and philosophy. Her MA thesis work considered the late landscapes of Gustave Courbet within the context of the emergence of evolutionary biology in the 1860s. She has held positions at the Morgan Library and Museum and the International Foundation for Art Research, and is currently based in New York.
Jiete Li
Jiete Li received her B.A. in Art History and Museums Concentration from Smith College and her M.A. in History of Art and Archaeology from the Institute of Fine Arts, New York University. Originally from Beijing, China, Jiete has engaged with art museums in many different and transformative ways. This is why she is particularly interested in interpreting art for meaningful public engagement. With an expertise in Asian art, Jiete brings to The Art Story a non-Western perspective for narrating the history of modern and contemporary art. She is also a freelance writer for The Art Newspaper China. She is now working at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C.
Elizabeth Berkowitz
Elizabeth Berkowitz is a PhD Candidate in Art History at the Graduate Center, CUNY. She holds an MA in Modern Art from Columbia University, and a Graduate Certificate in Museum Studies from Tufts University. Her area of expertise is pre-World War II European Modernism, but she also has a background and interest in nineteenth-century art, the intersection of art and authorial identity, art's relationship to wartime trauma, and institutional history. Her writing has appeared in Culture, Theory and Critique; The Brooklyn Rail; Tablet; and Artsy, and she manages the website Talk to Your Prof. In addition to a background as a museum educator at various institutions, she has taught courses at SUNY Purchase, Baruch College, and Hunter College.
Vitoria Hadba-Groom
Vitoria Hadba-Groom is an art historian, artist, and set designer. She holds a BFA in Art History from Pratt Institute, where she graduated with highest honors. She is currently an art history graduate student at Hunter College. Additionally, she studied at Central Saint Martin in London, and at UNIRIO in Rio de Janeiro. Before moving to New York, she worked extensively in film and theatre in Brazil. In the last few years, she has been an active participant in fundraising campaigns for major art institutions, while also exhibiting her work in group shows throughout the city. At present, Vitoria is involved in researching feminist artists working with performance in 1980s Brazil. She spends her free time devouring art books at NYPL.
Claire Mead
Claire Mead is a graduate of Oxford University (BA History of Art) and Courtauld Institute (MA Curating the Art Museum). Her background includes research and curatorial support on museum-based exhibitions, as well as the curation of historical contemporary art exhibitions. As an independent researcher and curator, Claire is particularly interested in the legacies of 19th century and early 20th century women artists and art dealers as well as avant-garde experimental animation practices. Her research work concentrates on the inclusion of LGBT, feminist and non-traditional artists and audiences within the art museum. She is currently based in Paris, working directly with emerging artists and writing on modern and contemporary art exhibitions.
Sarah Frances Dias
Sarah Frances Dias has a PhD in Architecture, having graduated with distinction from the Faculty of Architecture of the University of Lisbon. Her research focused on the significance of the artwork and the aesthetic qualities and principles underlying artistic creations. Her primary research areas also include the union and integration of the arts and the inherent poetics and spiritual qualities of art. Sarah is a freelance writer, researcher, architect and artist (painter and photographer) and has published essays and articles in various international scientific magazines, journals and congresses. Although she is currently based in Lisbon, Portugal, she often travels in Europe, South America, North Africa and currently, Arabic Countries in search of the underlying universal artistic principles she aims to discover.
Lilly Markaki
Lilly Markaki is a PhD researcher in Media Arts at Royal Holloway, University of London. In 2014, she graduated from the University of Glasgow’s Art; Politics; Transgression: 20th Century Avant-Gardes MLitt programme, having previously received a B.A. in Art History from the same institution. Focusing on Marcel Duchamp, her PhD project re-examines the artist, in an attempt to argue for an ethical and political dimension in his life and work, often overlooked by canonical understandings. In 2014, Lilly acted as an assistant curator for the Lucy Skaer exhibition at the Hunterian Museum and Art Gallery, Glasgow, and has since been involved in a variety of projects surrounding art and its relation to the world today.

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.
Sarah Levy
Sarah Levy is a freelance Graphic and Web Designer from New York City. She holds a professional certificate in Design Communication Arts from UCLA and also has a B.A in Social and Cultural History from The University of Maryland, College Park. Sarah is an all-around creative with an interest in all things artistic, especially the historical contexts from which art and design arise. Sarah grew up immersed in, and in awe of, the modern art that she found all around her in New York and loves the idea of bringing art to everyone through The Art Story.


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.
Ruth Epstein
Ruth Epstein is an art historian, journalist, and critic. Fellowships and teaching positions have enabled her to travel to major art destinations around the world, from Paris to Beijing. Whether in writing or in person, she enjoys the thrill of communicating themes in Modern and Contemporary art in plain language.

Based in New York, Epstein writes for ARTnews and an array of other publications including, most recently, Visualizing the Nineteenth-Century Home: Modern Art and the Decorative Impulse (Routledge) to which she contributed a chapter.
Kimberly Nichols
Kimberly Nichols is a freelance writer and artist living in Los Angeles. She is author of a book of short stories Mad Anatomy (Del Sol press). Her fiction and creative nonfiction has been published widely in magazines and newspapers such as the Los Angeles Times, Wine Enthusiast, and VICE Magazine. She has been an art critic for over fifteen years for magazines such as Art Ltd., Art and Living, Artdependence, Droste and Artillery. Her conceptual artwork, photography and paintings have been shown in exhibitions throughout California with an emphasis on San Francisco, Los Angeles and Palm Springs. Before starting her freelance career she worked as marketing director for the Palm Springs Art Museum, director of a prestigious multimillion dollar art gallery and as owner of a public relations firm centered on the art market. She brings a passion for modern and contemporary art and artists to The Art Story.
Sarah Archino
Sarah Archino is an assistant professor at Furman University in Greenville, SC. A specialist in early-twentieth century American art, her research explores the influence of anarchism on the development of abstraction. She also writes about Dada, Duchamp, and humor. She completed her B.A. at the University of Florida in European Art and History, her M.A. in Art History at Hunter College and received her PhD from the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. She has previously taught at Queens College, Franklin & Marshall, and Millsaps College and taught graduate seminars at the Institut national d'histoire de l'art, Paris, where she served as the Terra Foundation for American Art postdoctoral fellow.
Rachel Furnari
Rachel Furnari is an art historian, freelance writer, and curator who believes deeply in education and the demystification of modern art for a broad audience. She completed her MA and PhD coursework in art history at the University of Chicago and has more than ten years of experience writing about art for museums, galleries, and newspapers. Rachel also owns Graph Books, where she deals in rare printed matter related to avant-garde art and radical social movements.
Allison Harbin
Allison Harbin received her PhD in Art History from Rutgers University, where she received several fellowships and grants as a result of her writing and research. In addition to publishing widely on contemporary art from around the world, she has been a lecturer for Art History, Contemporary Art, and Photography. She is currently a freelance curator and writer based in Brooklyn, NY.
Meggie Morris
Meggie Morris holds a PhD in Art History from the Institute of Fine Arts of New York University. Her primary research areas span the art of Europe and the United States from the 20th and 21st centuries, focusing most on cinema, illustration, and photography. Her main expertise is in the art and cinema of modern Spain, especially the intersections of politics and art during the Franco regime and the transition to democracy in the 20th century. Meggie has contributed essays and chapters to several publications in both English and Spanish, and continues to work as an independent scholar and freelance writer. She is thrilled to contribute to The Art Story, sharing her fascination with modern and contemporary art and exploring its continued influence on us today. Meggie lives and works in San Diego, California.
Rohini Iyengar
Rohini Iyengar is a writer, academician and an art consultant based in New Jersey. She holds a Ph.D in Art History from the Dept. of Art History and Aesthetics, M.S.U, Baroda, India. With fourteen years of experience in teaching art history at different universities in India, Africa, France and the USA. She has also been actively engaged in research, writing and curatorial practice focusing on modern and contemporary art. She has presented papers at national and international conferences. Her publications include research papers and edited books.
Greg Thomas
Greg Thomas gained his PhD from the University of Edinburgh in 2013, having previously studied at the Universities of Cambridge and Sussex. Between 2014 and 2017 he was a British Academy Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Edinburgh, undertaking a research project on the Scottish poet and artist Ian Hamilton Finlay. His book on concrete poetry in England and Scotland during the 1960s-70s is being published by Liverpool University Press.
Daniel X Fleming
Daniel Xavier Fleming is an independent writer, consultant, coach, and career counselor for clients in the arts and creative industries. Since completing his PhD in Scotland in 1985, Daniel has taught, researched, and developed arts curricula at universities in Scotland, Ireland, Brazil, Japan, China, and Australasia. He has done postdoctoral work in the USA, held a personal chair in Cultural Studies at Ulster University in the UK and a senior professorship in the School of Arts at Waikato University in New Zealand. Daniel has authored or edited five books (as Dan Fleming) and published in numerous journals. His wide-ranging 30-year experience in the field of Visual Culture Studies brings to The Art Story his passion for how the act of seeing, especially through modern art, can enrich our constructions of the social world.
Past Contributors
Caroline Goldberg Igra
Caroline Goldberg Igra is an art historian and freelance writer. She received her B.A. with Honors from Brown University, her M.A. in Art History from the University of Michigan and her Ph.D. from the Institute of Fine Arts, New York University. She has published numerous articles on the modern cityscape and has taught art history at Haifa University and the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. She co-authored a book on J.D. Kirszenbaum with Somogy éditions d'Art (Paris 2013) and curated an exhibition on the artist at the Diaspora Museum in Tel Aviv. She blogs for the Jerusalem Post and is excited to join The Art Story team, making art history more accessible to people, like herself, who live abroad.
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.
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.
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.
Catarina Flaksman
Catarina Flaksman holds a MS in History of Art and Design from Pratt Institute. Born in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, she graduated in Architecture and Urban Design and worked as an architect before moving to Brooklyn, New York. Her curatorial experience includes exhibitions on modern and contemporary architecture and design as well as public art projects in major museums and arts organizations. She also works as a freelance writer, researcher, and editor. Catarina is interested in interdisciplinary practices that cross the boundaries between architecture and 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.
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.
Who Are Our Supporters

Our supporters are mostly regular people who care for our mission, vision, and services. They choose to support The Art Story with a meaningful gift regardless of their age, gender, race, or capacity (wealth). Here at Art Story, we are proud that our supporters make us part of their philanthropy. We love our donors, and we are grateful for their generosity!

Please consider joining our group of supporters, as our work would be impossible without such help.

Your feedback, comments, and recommendations are just as valuable to us as your financial support, so please take a minute to share. Like us on Facebook, subscribe to our infrequent emails, and recommend us to your friends.



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.