Rackstraw Downes (1939-), a landscape painter and author in New York City, edited and wrote the introduction to Fairfield Porter: Art In It's Own Terms: Selected Criticism 1935-1975. Born in Kent, England, Downes received a B.A. in English literature from Cambridge University in 1961 and earned an M.F.A. from the Yale School of Arts in 1961. Downes was personally acquainted with Porter.
Fairfield Porter (1907-1975), a painter, art critic and poet, resided in Southampton, New York. Porter was a strong advocate for figure painting. He wrote for ArtNews and The Nation, and eventually became art editor for The Nation.