Skip to main content
Charles Green Shaw
Curve of Winter
oil on canvas
Canvas: 51 1/8 × 34 inches (129.9 × 86.4 cm)Framed: 54 3/16 × 37 × 2 3/8 inches (137.6 × 94 × 6 cm)
Credit Line
Gift of Dr. Milton Mazo and Billy K. Poole.
Accession Number
Charles Green Shaw was a leader and founding member of American Abstract Artists, whose members fought to promote American abstract art in the 1930s. Curve of Winter is one of Shaw’s hallmark meditations on form. The work is heavily underpainted in white to enhance the brilliant layers of color in the artist’s palette of cobalt, rust, gray, and blue. The evocative power of words was important to Shaw—here, energetic form and a poetic title bring to mind the crisp energy of winter air or the crunch of snow underfoot.

Shaw was born to a wealthy upper-class family and emerged as a leading figure in the New York literary world in the 1920s. While he was a commercially successful painter, he is perhaps better remembered as a prolific children’s book author. His book, It Looked Like Spilt Milk, still inspires creative thinking in young children today.