June 15 - September 15, 2002
Born in Des Moines, Iowa in 1938, Harold Boyd's career as an artist and university professor spans over 30 years. From the late 1960s onward, Boyd's influence as a professor of painting and drawing can be seen in the work of his many students—including Nicolas Africano, Wonsook Kim, Tony Wong, and Diego Cortez. He retired as a full professor at Illinois State University in June 2000.
A master of line and psychological nuance, Boyd’s figures are engaged in dialogue, dance, and acts of physical endurance—all poignant yet comic commentaries on the human condition. Adlai Stevenson, Eleanor Roosevelt, William Carlos Williams, Gandhi, and other cultural heroes populate Boyd's fluid landscape. Since the mid-80s his work has consistently featured non-idealized aging male figures. Biographically or autobiographically inspired (his father, himself, Adlai Stevenson), yet fictional in result, these figures “all share an awakening clumsiness, as if surprised by gravity, as if remembering a weightless childhood, the childhood of a soap-bubble. But in the gallery, this all changes. There is closure everywhere, and with it grace and a surprisingly idea sort of beauty.” (Tim Porges, Harold Boyd, Old Body: Beginner's Mind, 1999)
Consisting of over 40 large and small-scale works on paper, prints, paintings, cut-metal sculpture and cast works from the 1970s to the present, our exhibition offered a comprehensive view of Boyd's oeuvre.