Class Year


Document Type

Student Research Paper

Date of Creation

Spring 2018

Department 1



Frank O’Hara, a curator at the Museum of Modern Art in New York and a published poet in the 1950s and 60s, was an exemplary yet enigmatic figure in both the literary and art worlds. While he published poetry, wrote art criticism, and curated exhibitions—on Franz Kline, Robert Motherwell, and Jackson Pollock—he also collaborated on numerous projects with visual artists, including Larry Rivers, Michael Goldberg, Grace Hartigan, Joe Brainard, Jane Freilicher, and Norman Bluhm. Scholars who study O’Hara fail to recognize his work with the aforementioned visual artists, only considering him a “Painterly Poet” or a “Poet Among Painters,” but never a poet and a visual artist. Through W.J.T. Mitchell’s “imagetext” model, I apply a hybridized literary and visual analysis to understand O’Hara’s artistic work in a new way. I highlight O’Hara’s previously under-acknowledge artistic collaborations that secure his place as both a poet and an artist.


Written as a senior capstone for Art History.

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Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.