Art UK has updated its cookies policy. By using this website you are agreeing to the use of cookies. To find out more read our updated Use of Cookies policy and our updated Privacy policy.


(b Khorkom, 15 Apr. ?1904; d Sherman, Conn., 21 July 1948). American painter, born in Turkish Armenia, who formed a link between European Surrealism and American Abstract Expressionism. He emigrated to the USA in 1920 and adopted the pseudonym Arshile Gorky, the first part of the name being derived from the Greek hero Achilles, the second part (Russ. ‘the bitter one’) from the Russian writer Maxim Gorky, to whom the painter sometimes claimed he was related (he often embroidered his past and his year of birth was perhaps earlier than the 1904 he usually claimed).

Text Source: The Oxford Dictionary of Art and Artists (Oxford University Press)