Howard Kanovitz
1929 – 2009


Howard Kanovitz (February 9, 1929 – February 2, 2009) was a pioneering painter in the Photorealist and Hyperrealist Movements, which emerged in the 1960s and 1970s in response to the abstract art movement.

Howard Kanovitz, whose 50-year career ranged from abstract expressionism to computer imaging, was at the forefront of the art movement known as photorealism. His 1966 landmark Jewish Museum solo exhibition launched this new genre of photo-based painting. Though dubbed by Barbara Rose “the grandfather of photorealism”, Kanovitz’s work transcended that classification in “realistic paintings for which the concept of realism is too narrow.” The preeminent art historian Sam Hunter described how Kanovitz’s “meticulous airbrush technique and exactness of vision produce an atmosphere of doubt rather than certitude and posed questions of meaning which challenge the very nature of the artistic experience.”

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Kanovitz was a pioneer of photorealist painting in the 1960s.

Country of birth

United States


Artist, musician, painter, sculptor

ULAN identifier



Howard Kanovitz

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Information from the Getty Research Institute's Union List of Artist Names ® (ULAN), made available under the ODC Attribution License. Accessed July 22, 2024.