James Brooks (painter)
Brooks working on a mural, 1940
October 18, 1906|
St. Louis, Mo.
|Died||March 9, 1992
Brookhaven, New York
|Known for||Painting, Muralism|
|Movement||Abstract Expressionism, Action painting, Lyrical Abstraction|
Life and career
Brooks was a friend of Jackson Pollock and Lee Krasner on Eastern Long Island. In 1947 he married artist Charlotte Park. Considered a first generation abstract expressionist painter, Brooks was among the first abstract expressionists to use staining as an important technique. According to art critic Carter Ratcliff, "His concern has always been to create painterly accidents of the kind that allow buried personal meanings to take on visibility." In his paintings from the late 1940s Brooks began to dilute his oil paint in order to stain the mostly raw canvas. These works often combined calligraphy and abstract shapes.
Brooks had his first one-man exhibition of his abstract expressionist paintings in 1949 at the Peridot Gallery in New York. The Courtauld Institute of Art (London), the Dallas Museum of Art (Dallas, Texas), the Museum of Modern Art (New York, NY), the Harvard University Art Museums, the Whitney Museum of American Art (New York, NY), the Honolulu Museum of Art, the Indianapolis Museum of Art (Indianapolis, Indiana), the Sheldon Art Gallery (Lincoln, Nebraska), the Smithsonian American Art Museum (Washington D.C.), the Tate Gallery (London) and the Walker Art Center (Minneapolis, Minnesota) are among the public collections holding work by James Brooks. His works were also exhibited by galleries including the Anita Shapolsky Gallery in New York City, the Peridot Gallery in New York, and Washburn Gallery in New York.
- 1923–1926: Southern Methodist University; Dallas Art Institute and with Martha Simkins.
- 1927–1930: The Art Students League of New York, New York City; night classes with Kimon Nicolaides and Boardman Robinson.
Brooks worked as a commercial letterer and display artist to support himself.
Participated in the Federal Art Project (WPA)
- 1947–1948: Columbia University, New York
- 1948–1955: Pratt Institute
- 1955–1960: Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut
- 1963: Artist-in-residence at the American Academy, Rome, Italy
- 1965–1967: New College, Sarasota, Florida
- 1966: Miami Beach Art Center, Miami Beach, Florida
- 1966–1969: Queens College, New York
- 1971–1972: University of Pennsylvania
- 1975: Cooper Union, New York City
- "James Brooks (1906–1992): Mounted Policeman (New York Policeman)". Mark Borghi Fine Art Inc. Retrieved June 8, 2005.
- Sandler, Irving H. "James Brooks and the abstract inscape", ARTnews (New York: Art Foundation, 1963) OCLC: 54034429
- Greenberg Van Doren Gallery
- on YouTube
- James Brooks: My whole tendency has been away from the fast moving line either violent or lyrical. —MOMA, Ann Tenpkin curator, AUDIO James Brooks. Qualm. 1954
- Brooklyn Rail, "Unlikely Friends: James Brooks & Dan Flavin."