Wednesday, October 21, 2009

The Art of Richard Mayhew |RETROSPECTIVE | MoAD

The Art of Richard Mayhew
October 10, 2009 – January 10, 2010

The Art of Richard Mayhew will represent three separate exhibitions presented concurrently at three San Francisco Bay Area institutions: the de Saisset Museum, the Museum of the African Diaspora (MoAD), and the Museum of Art and History in Santa Cruz. Together, the three presentations will provide a complete retrospective exhibition for Richard Mayhew, a nationally recognized, Aptos-based painter.

The exhibition of Mayhew's work at MoAD will be the first part of a three-part chronological retrospective of the artist's career. In this exhibition, Mayhew's paintings from the late 1950's through the 1970's, consisting primarily of landscape with some figurative works will be featured. In 1957, Mayhew enjoyed his first solo exhibition as an academically trained artist and announced his unique style of presenting the natural milieu to the New York art world. During the tumultuous period of social and cultural transformation of the 1960s, Mayhew worked as an artist and an activist most notably as a founding member of Spiral, the legendary group of Black artists including Romare Bearden, Norman Lewis, and Hale Woodruff, organized in 1963 to address issues of civil rights and racial equality through their art.

Through the 1960s and 1970s, Mayhew establishes his career as an artist tirelessly working with a sense of spiritual depth and freedom of color, form, and space. The MoAD exhibition will explore the personal and professional foundations of Mayhew’s style as a young man of African and Native American descent coming of age in New York during the 1950s explosion of Abstract Expressionist art.

It will gather together the best of Mayhew's paintings that combine his unique style, philosophy for painting, and synthesis of artistic and social influences that set the trajectory of his artistic career.

Image credit: Richard Mayhew, Love Bush, 2000, oil on canvas, 47 x 51 inches


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