Collection: Old Friends: Tony Berlant and James Hayward

The Telluride Gallery of Fine Art is pleased to present Old Friends: Tony Berlant and James Hayward, from Thursday, December 16, 2021 to Sunday, January 23, 2022.

Tony Berlant and James Hayward met during graduate studies at UCLA in 1966 and have been trusted friends and supporters of each other, both in and out of the studio, ever since. As their friendship has grown, their individual artistic pursuits have evolved in both focus and refinement. Their numerous honors and awards solidify them as instrumental figures in the West Coast art movement.

Critic David Pagel states, “Berlant is one of the most richly inventive artists working in any generation.” Since the 1960s, Berlant has used vintage printed tin and steel brads to create collages in both sculptural form and wall-mounted “paintings” in a way that defies dimensionality.  His source materials range from recycled advertisements to a polaroid portrait of himself taken by Andy Warhol. Berlant’s work appears in thirteen museum collections across the country, including the Art Institute of Chicago, LACMA, and the Whitney Museum of American Art.

Critic Dave Hickey called Hayward “a consummate painter and one of the major, enduring figures of our time.” Hayward’s work reveals the physical act of painting with a thick impasto application of color, a style he has been experimenting with since the 1980s. His abstract and usually monochromatic works are highly textured with both single panel and diptych formats on view in this exhibition. Hayward has been exhibiting his work since the 1960s and appears in numerous museum collections nationwide including LACMA and the Albright-Knox Gallery in New York. He was also awarded the Guggenheim Memorial Fellowship in 1983.

An exhibition catalogue is available through the gallery which features archival photographs of the two artists and an introductory essay by critic David Pagel who notes that this exhibition is “a modestly ambitious attempt to consider friendship as an essential ingredient of art, especially when it comes to the works made by Tony and Jimmy.” The Telluride Gallery is excited to bring together the works of these two artists who by different means have pursued the same end: beauty, delight, and pure visual pleasure.

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