Thursday, March 05, 2009

Charles Harper (1922-2007)

A Solo exhibition of original paintings and prints by Charles Harper opens at The Public Trust, Saturday March 7, 2009 (6-9PM). The exhibition runs through April 31, 2009.

Charles Harper (1922-2007)
Born in West Virginia in 1922, Harper's formative years were spent on his family farm. This upbringing shaped and inspired the direction of his visual language which began to take shape at the Art Academy of Cincinnati. It was there he met his wife and fellow artist Edie Harper. He would later go on to teach at the Art Academy while they raised their son Brett.

To this day, the images of Charles Harper are tightly woven into the fabric of our visual landscape. Harper's unique visual language rose to prominence with his contributions to Ford Times, as well as his work produced for the Audubon Society and the National Park Service. However, he is most renowned for his illustrations in The Golden Book of Biology. It is in this publication that one can see his effortless command of illustration and design.

His geometric style, which is synonymous with mid-century Modernism yielded some of the most compelling and timeless images of nature and wildlife. In a career that spanned 60 years, these depictions of nature have influenced generations of contemporary artists and designers, including Ryan McGinness whose work was exhibited alongside Harper's in the exhibition series, Graphic Content, at the Contemporary Arts Center in Cincinnati, Ohio.

In late 2007 a 400 page monograph titled, Charley Harper: An Illustrated Life, was authored by internationally acclaimed designer Todd Oldham and published by Ammo Books.

In an interview with Todd Oldham, Harper discussed his simplified forms:

"I don't think there was much resistance to the way I simplified things. I think everybody understood that. Some people liked it and others didn't care for it. There's some who want to count all the feathers in the wings and then others who never think about counting the feathers, like me."

This exhibition will consist of vintage serigraphs and original paintings. The Public Trust is honored to present the work of Charles Harper.

The Public Trust
2919-C Commerce St.
Dallas, TX 75226



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