Timeline 1970

  1. 1971

    "Fields IV", 1971.

    In May, she is awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Fine Art from Westem College (Miami University), Oxford, Ohio.

    From 1971–1973, polyptych paintings become her characteristic format as seen in the Fields series.

  2. 1972

    Mitchell in her sunflower garden at Vétheuil.

    March–April. Has her first major museum solo exhibition, “My Five Years in the Country: An Exhibition of Forty-nine Paintings by Joan Mitchell,” at the Everson Museum of Art, Syracuse, New York, includes works from six groupings—La Seine, River and Tree, Sunflower, Sans Neige, Blue, and the Fields series—all completed in France, 1966–72.

    Executes a series of seven large-scale etchings—her first exploration of the sunflower theme in the print medium—published by Arte Adrien Maeght, Paris.

  3. 1973

    "Blue Territory", 1972, exhibited at the Whitney in 1974.

    In May, she receives the Creative Arts Award Citation in Painting of Brandeis University, Waltham, Massachusetts, during a ceremony held at the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York.


    From March–May, Mitchell has an important solo exhibition at the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York where she shows twenty-two paintings completed in Vétheuil, 1969–73.

  4. 1975

    "Garden for Audrey" and Mitchell's dog Iva in her studio, Vétheuil, 1975.

    She completes a unique series of collaborative pastel drawings based on the writings of her friends, the poets Jacques Dupin, J. J. Mitchell, James Schuyler, Pierre Schneider, and Chris Larsen. Mitchell illustrates numerous works by these authors, typing out the poems herself and then drawing directly on the paper.

    Begins the focus on all-over painting that will continue through 1984. Her brushwork features long, vertical marks, agitated, twisting lines, and broad, gentle strokes.

  5. 1976

    Exhibition announcement featuring "Aires pour Marion", 1975.

    November–December. Mitchell has her first solo exhibition at Xavier Fourcade, lnc., New York. She remains affiliated with the gallery through 1987, having solo exhibitions there in 1977, 1980, 1981, 1983, 1985, and 1986.

  6. 1979

    "La Vie en Rose", 1979. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York.

    Her relationship with Jean-Paul Riopelle ends. Determined to overcome her unhappiness through her work, Mitchell paints the ironically titled La Vie en Rose (1979) after his departure.