Vera Klement is a highly regarded, influential Chicago artist who has worked for over 40 years in the city. She was born in Danzig, Poland (now Gdansk) and immigrated to New York City, where she trained at the Cooper Union School of Art at the height of Abstract Expressionism. In 1964, she moved to Chicago to work as an artist; she taught at the University of Chicago from 1969 to 1995. She has shown in numerous museums and has had major retrospective exhibitions at the Renaissance Society at the University of Chicago and the Chicago Cultural Center.
Her work is also featured in many major collections, including the Art Institute of Chicago, the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago, the Museum of Modern Art, the Philadelphia Museum of Art, and the Smart Museum at the University of Chicago. She has received distinguished awards, including a Guggenheim fellowship, National Endowment for the Arts grant, Pollock-Krasner Foundation Award, and has been named a Lifetime Distinguished Artist Member of the Union League Club.
Through years of work, Klement has created an intensely personal lexicon of archetypal images that are enduring and universal: the torso, tree, landscape, boat, bell, tub, fish, etc. Her mixture of figuration and abstraction recalls the strong emotional and romantic content of humankind communing with nature, the language of poetry, and the rich gestural vocabulary of Abstract Expressionism.