Roy De Forest
Diary of a Flapper, 1961
oil, acrylic on canvas
84 x 61 1/4 inches
RDp 47

Robert Arneson
Study for "Nasal Flat," 1980
pastel, acrylic on paper
37 1/2 x 27 3/4 inches
RAd 31

Joan Brown
The Misunderstanding, 1978
96 x 78 inches
JBRp 20

Peter Saul
Napoleon Crossing the Alps, 1976-1977
acrylic on canvas
89 1/2 x 82 1/2 inches
PSp 129

William T. Wiley
I Visit Bob, 1981
acrylic and charcoal on canvas
43 x 45 inches
WTWp 10

Robert Arneson
Untitled (Bas Relief), c. 1960
glazed ceramic
18 1/2 x 2 inches
RAs 205

William T. Wiley
Thanking the Void, 1979
acrylic, charcoal on canvas
27 x 42 inches
WTWp 12

Robert Arneson
Color Man, 1973
glazed ceramic
17 x 20 x 12 inches
RAs220

Peter Saul
Girl I, 1962
oil on canvas
63 x 47 1/2 inches
PSp 106

Joan Brown
Things and Mess in the Classroom, 1959
oil on canvas
60 x 60 inches
JBRp72

Robert Arneson
Untitled, 1962
paper collage with paint and cigarette butts
24 x 24 inches
RAp14

William T. Wiley
Boats/Indians, 1962
oil, pencil on canvas
14 x 17 inches
WTWp13

Robert Arneson
Fountain, c. 1962
glazed ceramic
36 x 18 x 12 inches
RAs183

Joan Brown
Crystal Vase, 1971
enamel on panel
29 1/2 x 23 1/2 inches
JBRp68

Roy De Forest
The Inside Story of a Youthful Strategist, 1963
PVA, acrylic, and oil on canvas
60 x 48 inches
RDp48

Roy De Forest
Untitled (Hiker and Dog with Heads), 1992
pastel, pencil on paper, hand-fabricated frame
37 x 48 inches
RDd48

William T. Wiley
Embers, 1976
watercolor and ink on paper
30 1/2 x 22 1/2 inches
WTWd13

Peter Saul
Lake Tahoe, c. 1966
colored pencil, marker, gouache on museum board
30 x 40 inches
PSd134

William T. Wiley
Ground Wire, 1973
ink marker on paper
22 x 30 inches
WTWd01

William T. Wiley
Cleaning the Palette, 1971
watercolor and ink on paper
10 3/4 x 14 7/8 inches
WTWd21

Robert Arneson
Alice House, 1967
watercolor on paper
19 x 24 7/8 inches
RAd51

Joan Brown
Portrait of a Chicken, 1967
oil on wood panel
16 x 15 inches
JBRp51

Roy De Forest
Camp Money, 1991
acrylic, pastel, pencil on paper, artist-made frame
63 1/2 x 95 inches
RDd 56

Installation View

Press Release

“Circle of Friends, Painting, Drawings, and Sculptures by Robert Arneson, Joan Brown, Roy DeForest, Peter Saul and William T. Wiley,” presents the works of five artists of seemingly diverse interests and styles: Arneson is best known for his ceramic self-portraits; Brown for her autobiographical, stylistically “Bad” paintings; DeForest for his fantastical paintings of animals in the landscape; Saul for his hyper-chromatic, insistently irreverent Pop Art paintings; and Wiley for his ruminative multi-media works once described by Hilton Kramer as “Dude Ranch Dada.”

Despite their apparent differences, on closer inspection these artists have a great deal in common. All five lived in California for significant portions of, if not their entire professional lives. Three - Arneson, Brown and Saul – were born in California while DeForest, born in Nebraska, and Wiley, born in Indiana, moved to the Bay Area at the beginning of their respective careers. Both studied at the San Francisco Art Institute (then California School of Fine Arts), where Joan Brown earned her BA and MFA and where Saul also studied before moving on to Washington University in St. Louis. Arneson, DeForest and Wiley were on the faculty at the University of California, Davis, where Wiley arranged to have Saul as a visiting artist after returning from living abroad. Brown, meanwhile, taught at UC Berkeley, where she eventually chaired the Art Department.

Aside from their roots, education and teaching, all five were bound by other ties, notably to galleries. Brown and Wiley both exhibited with George Staempfli in New York in the early 1960s, and all five would eventually be represented by the same galleries not only in San Francisco (originally the Hansen-Fuller Gallery, now Brian Gross), but also in New York (Allan Frumkin Gallery, now George Adams Gallery).

In addition, all five were included in Peter Selz’s seminal “Funk” exhibition at Berkeley in 1967, and again in “Painting and Sculpture in California: The Modern Era,” organized by the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art in 1977. There are also unexpected pairings: Brown and Wiley participating in “Young America” at the Whitney Museum in 1960; Deforest and Saul in the “67th American Exhibition” at the Art Institute of Chicago in 1964; Saul and Wiley in the 1966 Carnegie International; and Arneson, DeForest and Saul in “Recent Works on Paper” at the Madison Art Center in 1978. Arneson, Saul and Wiley showed together in the Whitney Museum’s “Human Concern/Personal Torment” show in 1969, and again in “Spirit of the Comics” in 1969 at the Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia, which also included DeForest. Many other examples of such overlappings exist throughout the careers of all five artists.

It is not by chance, then, that these artist influenced each other to varying degrees over the course of 30 or more years, and this exhibition presents a selection of paintings, drawings, and sculptures to demonstrate the impact these artists had on one another, often in unexpected ways.


CHRONOLOGY 1950 - 1990


Robert Arneson
b. Benicia, CA 1930 – d. Benicia, CA 1992

1958 - MFA Mills College, Oakland
1962-92 - Member of the faculty at University of California, Davis
1964 - First one-man exhibition in New York (Allan Stone Gallery) and San Francisco exhibition (Cellini Gallery)
1967 - “Funk” cur. Peter Selz, University of California, Berkeley
1968 - Begins exhibiting regularly at Hansen-Fuller, San Francisco
1969 - “Spirit of the Comics” Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia, PA
1969 - Begins exhibiting regularly at the Candy Store Gallery, Folsom, CA
1969-70 - “Human Concern/Personal Torment” Whitney Museum of American Art, NY and University of California, Berkeley
1974 - First retrospective exhibition, Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago
1974 - “Contemporary Painting and Sculpture,” University of Illinois, Champaign
1975 - Begins exhibiting regularly at the Allan Frumkin Gallery, NY
1976 - “6 from California” Washington State University, Pullman
1976-77 - “Painting and Sculpture in California: The Modern Era” San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and the National Gallery of Fine Arts, Smithsonian Institute, Washington, DC
1977-78 - “Recent Works on Paper,” Madison Art Center, WI
1986 - Second retrospective exhibition, Des Moines Art Center, IO


Joan Brown
b. San Francisco, CA 1938 – d. Prasanthinilayam, India, 1990

1955-59 - Studies at CSFA with Elmer Bischoff and Richard Diebenkorn
1957 - First two-person show in San Francisco (Spatsa Gallery); Begins exhibiting regularly in San Francisco
1960 - 1964 - Exhibits regularly at the Staempfli Gallery, NY
1960 - “Young America” Whitney Museum of American Art, NY
1960 - Receives MFA from CSFA
1961, 63, 73, 74 - “Contemporary Painting and Sculpture” University of Illinois, Champaign
1961 - Member of the faculty of CSFA
1965 - Stops exhibiting
1967 - “Funk” cur. Peter Selz, University of California, Berkeley
1967 - Begins exhibiting regularly with the Hansen-Fuller Gallery, San Francisco
1972 - Crocker Art Gallery, Sacramento, CA
1974 - First retrospective exhibition, University of California, Berkeley
1974-90 - Member of the faculty, University of California, Berkeley
1974 - Begins exhibiting regularly at the Allan Frumkin Gallery, NY
1976-77 - “Painting and Sculpture in California: The Modern Era” San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and the National Gallery of Fine Arts, Smithsonian Institute, Washington, DC
1978 - “West Coast Artists” New Gallery of Contemporary Art, Cleveland, OH
1980 - “Figurative Art: Brown, Colescott, DeForest, Provisor, Gaison, Wurm” Mandeville Gallery, University of California, La Jolla
1980 - “Joan Brown, Robert Colescott, Roy DeForest” Fountain Gallery, Portland


Roy DeForest
North Platte, NE 1930- Port Costa, CA 2007

1950-52 - Moves to San Francisco, studies at CSFA with Hassell Smith, David Park, and Elmer Bischoff
1952 - begins exhibiting regularly in San Francisco
1958-60 - Lives in Yakima, WA
1958-67 - Exhibits regularly at the Dilexi Gallery, San Francisco
1960 - Returns to San Francisco
1964 - 67th American Exhibition, Art Institute of Chicago
1965-92 - Member of the faculty at University of California, Davis
1966 - Begins exhibiting regularly at the Allan Frumkin Gallery, NY
1967 - “Funk” cur. Peter Selz, University of California, Berkeley
1968 - Begins exhibiting regularly at the Candy Store Gallery, Folsom, CA
1969 - “Spirit of the Comics” Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia, PA
1971 - Begins exhibiting regularly at the Hansen-Fuller Gallery, San Francisco
1972 - Crocker Art Gallery, Sacramento, CA
1974-75 - Retrospective exhibition, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; Fort Worth Art Center, TX; Utah Museum of Fine Arts, University of Utah, Salt Lake City; Whitney Museum of American Art, NY
1974-87 - Galerie Darthea Speyer, Paris
1976 - “6 from California,” Washington State University, Pullman, WA
1976-77  - “Painting and Sculpture in California: The Modern Era” San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and the National Gallery of Fine Arts, Smithsonian Institute, Washington, DC.
1977-78  - “Recent Works on Paper,” Madison Art Center, WI
1978 - “West Coast Artists” New Gallery of Contemporary Art, Cleveland, OH
1980 - “Figurative Art: Brown, Colescott, DeForest, Provisor, Gaison, Wurm” Mandeville Gallery, University of California, La Jolla
1980 - “Joan Brown, Robert Colescott, Roy DeForest,” Fountain Gallery, Portland
1980 - “The Figurative Tradition and the Whitney Museum of American Art” Whitney Museum of American Art, NY


Peter Saul
San Francisco, CA 1934

1950-52 - Studies at the SFAI
1952-56 - Studies at Washington University, St Louis
1956-64 - Moves to Europe
1961 - Begins exhibiting regularly at the Allan Frumkin Gallery, NY
1964 - Returns to the US, lives in Mill Valley, CA
1964 - 67th American Exhibition, Art Institute of Chicago
1967 - “Carnegie International” Carnegie Institute, Pittsburgh, PA
1967 - “Funk” cur. Peter Selz, University of California, Berkeley
1968 - One-person exhibition, SFAI
1968 - California College of Arts and Crafts Gallery, Oakland
1969 - “Spirit of the Comics” Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia, PA
1969-70  - “Human Concern/Personal Torment” Whitney Museum of American Art, NY and University of California, Berkeley
1969, 72 - Galerie Darthea Speyer, Paris
1971, 74 - “Contemporary Painting and Sculpture” University of Illinois, Champaign
1973 - Art Gallery, California State University, Sacramento
1975-81 - Lives in Chappaqua, NY
1976-77 - “Painting and Sculpture in California: The Modern Era” San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and the National Gallery of Fine Arts, Smithsonian Institute, Washington, DC.
1977-78 – “Recent Works on Paper,” Madison Art Center, WI
1980 - First retrospective exhibition, Northern Illinois University, De Kalb
1980 - “The Figurative Tradition and the Whitney Museum of American Art” Whitney Museum of American Art, NY
1981-2000 - Member of the faculty, UT, Austin
1986 - Begins exhibiting regularly at the Rena Bransten Gallery, SF
1989 - Second retrospective exhibition, Aspen Art Museum, CO


William T. Wiley
Bedford, IN 1937

1959-60 - Studies at SFAI
1960 - First one-man exhibition at San Francisco Museum of Art
1960 - “Young America” Whitney Museum of American Art, NY
1960-66 - Exhibits regularly with the Staempfli Gallery, NY
1962 - Receives MFA from SFAI
1962-73 - Member of the faculty, University of California, Davis
1963 - Teaches at SFAI
1963, 76 - “Contemporary Painting and Sculpture” University of Illinois, Champaign
1966-67 - Teaches at SFAI
1967 - Teaches at University of California, Berkeley
1967 - “Carnegie International” Carnegie Institute, Pittsburgh, PA
1967 - “Funk” cur. Peter Selz, University of California, Berkeley
1968 – Begins exhibiting regularly at the Hansen-Fuller Gallery, San Francisco and the Allan Frumkin Gallery, NY
1969 - “Spirit of the Comics.” Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia, PA
1969-70 - “Human Concern/Personal Torment” Whitney Museum of American Art, NY and University of California, Berkeley
1971 - One-person exhibition, Art Museum, UC, Berkeley
1972 - James Manolides Gallery, Seattle
1976-77 - “Painting and Sculpture in California: The Modern Era” San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and the National Gallery of Fine Arts, Smithsonian Institute, Washington, DC.
1979 - First retrospective exhibition, Walker Art Center, MN
1984 - One-person exhibition, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art
1988 - One-person exhibition, Nelson Gallery, University of California, Davis


CHECKLIST


1.
Roy DeForest
Diary of a Flapper, 1961
oil, acrylic on canvas
84 x 61 ¼ inches
RDp 47

2.
Robert Arneson
Untitled (Bas Relief), c. 1960
glazed ceramic
18 ½ x 2 inches
RAs 205

3.
William T. Wiley
Thanking the Void, 1979
acrylic, charcoal on canvas
27 x 42 inches
WTWp 12

4.
Robert Arneson
Color Man, 1973
glazed ceramic
17 x 20 x 12 inches
RAs 220

5.
Joan Brown
The Misunderstanding, 1978
enamel on canvas
96 x 78 inches
JBRp 20

6.
William T. Wiley
I Visit Bob, 1981
acrylic and charcoal on canvas
43 x 45 inches
WTWp 10

7.
Peter Saul
Girl I, 1962
oil on canvas
63 x 47 ¼ inches
PSp 106

8.
Joan Brown
Things and Mess in the Classroom, 1959
oil on canvas
60 x 60 inches
JBRp 72

9.
Robert Arneson
Untitled, 1962
paper collage with paint and cigarette butts
24 x 24 inches
RAp 14

10.
William T. Wiley
Boat/Indians, 1962
oil, pencil on canvas
14 x 17 inches
WTWp 13

11.
Robert Arneson
Fountain, c.1962
glazed ceramic
36 x 18 x12 inches
RAs 183

12.
Peter Saul
Napoleon Crossing the Alps, 1976-77
acrylic on canvas
89 ½ x 82 ½ inches
PSp 129

13. (East window)
Joan Brown
Crystal Vase, 1971
enamel on panel
29 ½ x 23 ½ inches
JBRp 68

14. (West window)
Roy DeForest
The Inside Story of a Youthful Strategist, 1963
PVA, acrylic and oil on canvas
60 x 48 inches
RDp 48


Drawing Gallery

1.
Roy DeForest
Untitled (Hiker and Dog w Heads), 1992
pastel, pencil on paper, hand-fabricated frame
37 x 48 inches
RDd 48

2.
William T. Wiley
Embers, 1976
watercolor and ink on paper
30 ½ x 22 ½ inches
WTWd 13

3.
Peter Saul
Lake Tahoe, c.1966
colored pencil, marker, gouache on museum board
30 x 40 inches
PSd 134

4.
William T. Wiley
Ground Wire, 1973
ink marker on paper
22 x 30 inches
WTWd 01

5.
Robert Arneson
Study for 'Nasal Flat', 1980
pastel, acrylic on paper
37 ½ x 27 ¾ inches
RAd 31

6.
William T. Wiley
Cleaning the Palette, 1971
watercolor and ink on paper
10 3/4 x 14 7/8 inches
WTWd 21

7.
Robert Arneson
Alice House, 1967
watercolor on paper
19 x 24 7/8 inches
RAd 51

8.
Joan Brown
Portrait of a Chicken, 1967
oil on wood panel
16 x 15 inches
JBRp 51