Accomplished painter, sculptor, printmaker and filmmaker, the work of Nancy Graves is colorful, eclectic, and unrestrained. Drawing imagery from a wide variety of sources, including anatomy, paleontology, anthropology, computer mapping, and our everyday world, Graves masterfully forms cohesive compositions of widely disparate materials and objects.

"Graves has cast found objects and specimens of plant and marine life directly into bronze, combined the diverse items on site by welding and then patinated, painted or enameled the surfaces with a rich variety of colors. The resulting works - floating and often whimsical assemblages plucked from an exotic Constructivist garden - occupy a unique place in contemporary sculpture," writes Avis Berman, regular contributor to Art News. "Her sculptures fuse realism, spatial illusion and ornament, and blur the boundaries between paintings and sculpture to arrive at a totality."

Nancy Graves was the first woman artist to have a solo retrospective at the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York. Other important solo exhibitions include those at The National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa (1971,1973), Neue Galerie der Stadt Aachen (1971), Museum of Modern Art, New York (1971), Institute of Contemporary Art of the University of Pennsylvania (1972), La Jolla Museum of Contemporary Art (1973), Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo (1980), Vassar College Art Gallery (1986). In 1987 The Fort Worth Art Museum organized a sculpture retrospective, accompanied by a catalogue raisonné. She died in New York City on October 23, 1995.

SELECTED BIOGRAPHY
1939 Born, December 23, Pittsfield, Massachusetts
1961 B.A., Vassar College
1964 B.F.A. and M.F.A., School of Art and Architecture, Yale University
1965 Fulbright-Hayes Grant in painting, Paris
1995 Died, New York City, New York

SELECTED ONE-ARTIST EXHIBITIONS
1969 Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, New York:
"Nancy Graves: Camels," March 24 - April 30, 1969
1972 The Museum of Modern Art, New York:
"Projects: Nancy Graves," Painting: December 15, 1971 - January 24, 1972;
Sculpture: December 15, 1971 - February 2, 1972.
1973 National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa:
"Variability and Repetition of Variable Forms by Nancy Graves," January, 19 - May 27, 1973.
La Jolla Museum of Contemporary Art, La Jolla, California:
"Nancy Graves," August 25 - October 7, 1973; traveled to: Art Museum of South
Texas, Corpus Christi, Texas.
1987 The Fort Worth Art Museum, Texas(organizing institution):
"Nancy Graves: A Sculpture Retrospective," Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture
Garden, Washington, DC, February 19 - April 26, 1987; circulated to: The Fort
Worth Art Museum, Texas, May 17 - July 12, 1987; The Santa Barbara Museum
of Art, California, August 29 - October 25, 1987; The Brooklyn Museum, New
York, December 10, 1987 - February 29, 1988.
1988 Gallery Mukai, Tokyo, Japan:
Nancy Graves," May 21 - June 25, 1988. Catalogue.
1989 Knoedler Kasmin Gallery, London, England:
"Nancy Graves: New Sculpture," April 4 - May 1989.
1995 National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada:
Contemporary Galleries Exhibition, May - September, 1995.
1997 Knoedler and Company, New York, New York:
"Nancy Graves: Between Painting & Sculpture: A Selection from the Eighties,"
October 9 - November 1, 1997. 2001 Lowe Gallery, Atlanta, GA: "Nancy Graves: Paintings, Sculpture, and Works on Paper," January 12 - February 28, 2001.

SELECTED PUBLIC COLLECTIONS

Berkshire Museum, Pittsfield, Massachusetts
Birmingham Museum of Art, Birmingham, Alabama
Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn, New York
Brooks Memorial Art Gallery, Memphis, Tennessee
Chicago Art Institute, Chicago, Illinois
Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington, DC
Fort Worth Art Museum, Fort Worth, Texas
High Museum of Art, Atlanta, Georgia
Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington, DC
La Jolla Museum of Contemporary Art, La Jolla, California
Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Los Angeles, California
Ludwig Museum, Cologne, Germany
Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, New York
Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, Illinois
Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Texas
Museum of Modern Art, New York, New York
Museum of Modern Art, Vienna, Austria
National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa, Canada
Neue Galerie im Altan Kurhaus, Aachen, Germany
Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, New York
Vassar Art Gallery, Poughkeepsie, New York
Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, Minnesota
Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, New York

 

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