CLAY SPOHN (1898 - 1977) Untitled Abstract - Circa 1962 Acrylic on canvas, 42" x 27"
CLAY SPOHN (1898 - 1977)
Born in San Francisco in 1898, Spohn attended the California College of Arts and Crafts in Oakland from 1910 to 1916, the California School of Fine Arts, San Francisco in 1914, 1920-1921 and the University of California Berkeley, between 1919 and 1922 with Armin Hansen.
In 1922 Clay Spohn moved to New York and studied at the Art Students League from 1922 to 1924, under George Luks and Guy Pene Du Bois. While in New York at the Art Students League, Spohn became a close friend with Alexander Calder and it was Spohn who suggested to Calder that he incorporate movement into his sculpture. From 1926 to 1927, he studied in Paris at the Academie Moderne.
Returning to San Francisco in 1927, Spohn became an active member in the Bay Area art scene. In 1945, Spohn was hired by the California School of Fine Arts where he taught until 1950. While teaching at the California School of Fine Arts he befriended Mark Rothko, Clyfford Still, Richard Diebenkorn and Hassel Smith.
In 1952 Spohn moved to Taos, New Mexico and remained there until 1958. By 1964 Spohn had returned to New York and taught at the School of Visual Arts until 1969.
Literature: 2005 Davenport, Ray Davenport's Art Reference: The Gold Edition 2005 AskART.com Inc. - Dunbier, Lonnie Pierson (Editor) The Artists Bluebook 2004 Landauer, Susan San Francisco and Second Wave: The Blair Collection of Bay Area Abstract Expressionism 2002 Hughes, Edan Milton Artists in California: 1786-1940 2002 Witt, David L. Modernists in Taos: From Dasburg to Martin 2002 McClelland, Gordon T; Jay T. Last California Watercolors 1850-1970, An Illustrated History & Biographical Dictionary 1999 Beasley, David Understanding Modern Art: The Boundless Spirit of Clay Edgar Spohn 1999 Falk, Peter Hastings (Editor) Who Was Who in American Art, 1564-1975, 3 volumes 1998 Moure, Nancy Dustin Wall California Art: 450 Years of Painting & Other Media 1997 Ellis, Robert M. (Director) Harwood Museum: Collection Handbook 1996 Karlstrom, Paul J (editor) On the Edge of America California Modernist Art, 1900-1950 1996 Landauer, Susan * The San Francisco School of Abstract Expressionism 1996 Robert White, Editor New Mexico Art History Conference Abstracts, 1986-1995 1995 Ehrlich, Susan (editor) * Pacific Dreams: Currents of Surrealism and Fantasy in California 1992 Witt, David Taos Moderns Art of the New 1989 Hughes, Edan Milton Artists in California, 1786-1940 1987 Cummings, Paul Dictionary of Contemporary American Artists (5th Edition) 1986 Opitz, Glenn B (editor) Mantle Fielding's Dictionary of American Painters, Sculptors & Engravers 1985 Albright, Thomas Art in the San Francisco Bay Area 1945-1980/An Illustrated History 1985 Falk, Peter Hastings (Editor) Who Was Who in American Art: Artists Active Between 1898-1947 1984 Orr-Cahill, Christina The Art of California Selected Works/ Oakland Museum 1984 Opitz, Glenn B (editor) Dictionary of American Sculptors: 18th Century to Present 1984 Witt, David L The Taos Artists A Historical and Biographical Dictionary 1981 Baird, Joseph Armstrong Jr. From Exposition to Exposition Northern California Painting 1976 San Francisco Museum Modern Art Painting & Sculpture in California The Modern Era 1975 Editor, Smithsonian Smithsonian Archives of American Art: Checklist of the Collection 1974 Plagens, Peter Sunshine Muse Contemporary Art on the West Coast 1973 McChesney, Mary Fuller A Period of Exploration San Francisco 1945-1950 1939 Parker, Thomas (De Young Mus) * Frontiers of American Art: Works Progress Administration 1935 Mallett, Daniel Trowbridge Index of Artists: International-Biographical Two Volumes
Solo Exhibitions: 1931 San Francisco Art League and Art Center Gallery, San Francisco, California 1942 San Francisco Museum of Art, San Francisco, California 1946 Rotunda Gallery, Paris 1947 Stables Gallery, Taos, New Mexico 1971 Atrium Orbis Corporation, Santa Fe, New Mexico 1974 The Oakland Museum, Oakland, California
Selected Group Exhibitions: 1945 San Francisco Museum of Art: 65th Annual Painting and Sculpture Exhibition 1946 California Palace of The Legion of Honor: First Spring Annual Exhibition 1948 California Palace of The Legion of Honor: Second Annual Exhibition 1948 San Francisco Museum of Art: 67th Annual Painting and Sculpture Exhibition 1954 San Francisco Museum of Art: 73rd Annual Painting and Sculpture Exhibition 1973 Oakland Museum: A Period of Exploration: San Francisco 1945-1950 1976 San Francisco Museum of Art: Painting and Sculpture - The Modern Era
Museums: Oakland Museum of California, Oakland, California San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SF MOMA), San Francisco, California The Harwood Museum of Art, Taos, New Mexico Frederick R Weisman Art Museum, The University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, Minnesota
Sources: Smithsonian Archives of American Art David Carlson, Carlson Gallery www.AskART.com