JAMES GRANT (1924 - 1997) Collage Red Yellow And Green 1963 Mixed media on wood board, 18" x 27.5"
Grant, James (1924 - 1997)
James Grant was a painter and sculptor most active from the late 1950s into the early 1970s. Best known for his sculptural work in plastics, this work by no means defined him, but was rather a natural endpoint of an exploration into increased dimensionality - starting from abstract canvases, moving through collages and bas-reliefs until the work finally came off the wall in sculptural form.
Grant was born in Los Angeles in 1924. After receiving his undergraduate degree in Engineering from USC, he went on to pursue his M.F.A. at the Jepson Art Institute in Los Angeles, studying under Rico Lebrun. In 1950 he accepted a teaching position at Pomona College in Claremont, CA where he was Assistant Professor of Art for nine years. During his tenure at Pomona he worked with many influential artists and art historians, including painters Karl Benjamin and Frederick Hammersley, as well as Peter Selz (who later went on to become Chief Curator of Painting and Sculpture at MoMA, New York) and Seymour Slive (Director of the Fogg Museum, Harvard University).
While working in Southern California, Grant had solo exhibitions at the Pasadena Art Museum, Pomona College, and U.C. Riverside, and group exhibitions at the Los Angeles County Museum, the Oakland Art Museum, the San Francisco Museum of Art (now S.F. MoMA).
After Pomona, Grant enjoyed a two year stay in Rome where his paintings began to develop in texture -- moving more towards collage work, using both paint and fabric. His stay was punctuated by a solo exhibition at the Galleria Pogliani in Rome.
Upon returning to the United States in 1962, Grant settled in San Francisco, where his collage work continued. In 1963 he had a solo exhibition at the M.H. de Young Museum in San Francisco. During the 60s, he showed regularly at galleries and museums both in the Bay Area (Hansen Gallery) and New York (Bertha Schaefer Gallery and Grand Central Moderns).
In the mid 1960s, his collages began to include polyester resin which he applied in a painterly fashion to the canvas. Soon he began to cast the resin into large, textured bas-reliefs. His plastic work culminated in the development of large cast resin freestanding sculptures of geometric disks, tall spikes and subtly curved shapes which were highly polished.
In 1970, he had a retrospective at Mills College in Oakland documenting his transition in style from abstract canvases to collages to bas-reliefs and finally the freestanding sculptures. During the 1970s, he worked on several commissioned works, many incorporating unique plastic and glass materials.
After a break from art during the late 1970s, he returned to painting in the early 1980s producing small watercolors that were cut into squares and reassembled into grids. He then took this format to a large scale, painting acrylic canvases which were also cut into squares and reassembled in works ranging from four to eight feet. This work continued into the 1990s.
Grant passed away in Stinson Beach, CA in August 1997.
Literature: 2005 AskART.com; Dunbier, Pierson: The Artists Bluebook 34,000 North American Artists to 2005 2005 Davenport, Ray. Davenport's Art Reference: The Gold Edition 2004 Landauer, Susan, et al. San Francisco and Second Wave: The Blair Collection of Bay Area Abstract Expressionism 1985 DuPont, Diana, K Holland. San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; Paintings and Sculpture 1985 Albright, Thomas. Art in the San Francisco Bay Area; 1945-1980/An Illustrated History 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 1974 Busch, Julia. A Decade of Sculpture; The 1960s 1968 Tampa Bay Art Center. 40 Now California Painters 1965 Selz, Peter. Art Across America
Museums: Claremont Museum of Art Georgia Museum of Art Oakland Museum of Art M.H. de Young Museum San Francisco Pasadena Art Museum Pomona College Museum of Art, Montgomery Art Center San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SF MOMA) The Carnegie Art Museum The University of Mary Washington Galleries
Solo Exhibitions: 1972 Triangle Gallery, San Francisco 1970 Mills College Art Gallery 1969 Seligman Gallery, Seattle, WA 1968 Raymond College, University of the Pacific 1966 Hansen Gallery, San Francisco 1963 Grand Central Moderns, New York 1963 M.H. de Young Memorial Museum, San Francisco 1962 Galleria Pogliani, Rome 1961 Grand Central Moderns, New York 1958 University of California at Riverside 1958 Humboldt State College 1958 Pomona College, Claremont, CA 1956 Pasadena Art Museum
Selected Group Exhibitions: 2007 Fresno Art Museum, Fresno, CA, San Francisco and the Second Wave: The Blair Collection of Abstract Expressionism 2004 Crocker Art Museum, Sacramento, CA, San Francisco and the Second Wave: The Blair Collection of Abstract Expressionism 1995 Triton Museum of Art, Santa Clara, CA, A Bay Area Connection: Works from the Anderson Collection 1985 Pomona College, The Colleges Collect 1971 University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana, Contemporary American Painting and Sculpture 1971 Stanford Art Gallery, Palo Alto, CA, West Coast Art 1971 Richmond Art Center, Richmond, CA, Color in Sculpture 1971 Oakland Art Museum, Oakland, CA, Pierres de Fantasie 1970 Joslyn Art Museum, Omaha, NE, Looking West 1969 University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana, Contemporary American Painting and Sculpture 1968 Museum of Contemporary Crafts, New York, Plastic as Plastic 1969 Institute of Contemporary Art, University of Pennsylvania, PA, Plastics: New Art 1968 Hansen Gallery, San Francisco, CA, Recent Developments in Plastic 1968 Crocker Art Gallery, Sacramento, CA, West Coast ’68, Painters and Sculptors 1967 Hansen Gallery, San Francisco, CA, Plastics West Coast 1967 University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana, Contemporary American Painting and Sculpture 1966 Mead Corporation, Art Across America 1966 Crocker Art Gallery, Sacramento, CA, ’66 Painters and Sculptors 1966 San Francisco Museum of Art, San Francisco, CA, San Francisco Art Institute 85th Annual Exhibition 1963 Mary Washington College of the University of Virginia 1963 Idaho State University 1963 Stephens College, Columbia, Missouri 1963 Cornell University, Ithaca New York 1962 Art Center in La Jolla 1960 University of Nebraska, Nebraska Art Association Annual 1959 Pasadena Art Museum, A Decade (1949-1959) 1959 Bertha Schaefer Gallery, New York 1958 San Francisco Museum of Art, San Francisco, CA, San Francisco Art Institute 77th Annual Painting and Sculpture Exhibition 1957 California State Fair and Exhibition 1956 Pomona Museum, Pomona, CA, Grant, Hammersley, Lawler 1955 Los Angeles County Museum 1954 Oakland Art Museum, Western Painters Annual Exhibition 1954 Los Angeles County Museum; University of Southern California
Sources: www.AskART.com Tony Grant (son)
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