Gertrude Barrer was born in New York City in 1921. She attended the Art Students League and the University of Iowa. She was a co-founder and art editor of Iconograph, an avant-garde art and literary magazine that was influential to the Abstract Expressionist movement and the Indian Space movement. Her artwork has been exhibited at the Art Institute of Chicago, the Brooklyn Museum of Art, and the Whitney Museum of American Art. Barrer has been credited by art historians for the past twenty years as having been aleading contributor to American Modern Art. She died in New York in 1992.