Boyer Gonzales "Edge of Deep Woods" - C. 1949
Oil on panel
18.5" x 24.75" Framed
18" x 24” Unframed
Boyer Gonzales (1909-1987) grew up in an artistic milieu, particularly after his father built a summer studio in Woodstock, New York, a popular artists' colony, in 1919. Gonzales spent four years studying painting in Woodstock under Henry Lee McFee, Yasuo Kuniyoshi, Charles Rosen, Eugene Speicher, and his father. In 1935, he participated in the 14th Biennial Exhibition of Contemporary American Oil Paintings at the Corcoran Gallery in Washington, and in 1936 he exhibited his work in group shows at Rockefeller Center, New York, the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts in Philadelphia, and the Texas Centennial Exhibition at the Dallas Museum of Fine Arts (now the Dallas Museum of Art). In 1954, he accepted a position as director of the School of Art at the University of Washington in Seattle. Gonzales was a member of the Seattle Municipal Art Commission from 1957 to 1960 and served as vice president and director of the National Association of Schools of Art.
During the course of his career Gonzales's style evolved from realism to bold abstraction of forms, patterns, and colors found in nature. Rocks, trees, sky, and shadows on a wall were some of the visual stimulants for his abstractions, which typically obscured any relationship to these objects. Gonzales used oils on canvas or panel, as well as ink, pencil, or conté crayon on paper; he worked on a modest scale in order to imbue his works with intimacy. He claimed an interest "in personal responses that combine observation with intuition and imagination." He defined a successful work as one with "an inner spirit and life of its own." At his career's end Gonzales had participated in over forty group exhibitions and thirteen solo exhibitions. Three of the latter were retrospective exhibitions, mounted by the Whatcom County Museum of History and Art in Bellingham, Washington (1978); the Henry Art Gallery, University of Washington, Seattle (1979); and the Rosenberg Gallery in Galveston, Texas (1981).
Gonzales was a member of the Woodstock Art Association, the Southern States Art League, the Scarab Club, the College Art Association, and Tau Sigma Delta. He died on July 27, 1987, after a short illness. Examples of his work are in the permanent collections of the Dallas Museum of Art, the Witte Memorial Museum, the Henry Art Gallery, the Seattle Art Museum, and the Tacoma Art Museum.
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