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DAVID PARK (American, 1911-1960), Untitled (Standing Male Nude), ca. 1959, Ink wash on paper, 17” x 14”; 24” x 20” framed

David Park

American   (1911 – 1960)

David Park was a painter and founding member of the Bay Area Figurative Movement, known for his thickly painted, intensely colored portraits. Born in Boston, Park moved to Los Angeles in 1928 to study at the Otis Art Institute for a year before dropping out. He went on to teach at the San Francisco Art Institute for many years, where he met at befriended fellow painters Richard Diebenkorn and Elmer Bischoff.

“He came under abstraction’s spell for a while but, like a bad candidate for hypnosis, never succumbed to it comfortably,” SF Chronicle art critic Kenneth Baker once wrote.
Boldly cropped figurative works, showing couples and small groupings of men and women, nudes and close-up, semi-abstract faces composed in an economy of broad brushstrokes would consume Park until his early death from cancer in 1960, at just 49 years old.
-Jessica Zack, San Francisco Chronicle

Park’s work has been the subject of solo exhibitions at Paul Kantor Gallery in Los Angeles, the Santa Barbara Museum of Art, the Oakland Museum of California, and the Palo Alto Art Center, among many others. The Whitney Museum of American Art held a major retrospective of his work in 1988.

Selected Exhibitions
2006     The Figure in Context: Bay Area Figurative Art, di Rosa Preserve, Napa, CA
2000     San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, SF, CA
1991     Homage to the San Francisco Art Institute: Artists Who Transformed American Culture, Hackett-Freedman, SF
1989     The Whitney Museum of American Art, NY, NY
1988     Stanford University Museum, Palo Alto, CA
1986     Oakland Museum of California, Oakland, CA
1985 & 1983
Salander-O’Reilly Galleries, New York, NY
Oakland Museum of California, Oakland, CA
1977–1978 Newport Harbor Art Museum, Newport Beach, CA
1974     Adele Bednarz Galleries, Los Angeles, CA
Maxwell Galleries, San Francisco, CA
1968      Santa Barbara Museum of Art
1964–1965   Berkeley Art Museum, Univ of California
1963      Staempfli Gallery, New York, NY (also 1962, 1959)
1959      M.H. de Young Memorial Museum, San Francisco, CA
1955      Richmond Art Center, Richmond, CA
1954      Paul Kantor Gallery, Los Angeles, CA
1946      Palace of the Legion of Honor, San Francisco, CA
1940 & 1935   San Francisco Museum of Art, SF, CA
1939      New Gallery of Boston, Boston, MA
1936      Delphic Studios, New York, NY

Selected Collections
Museum of Fine Arts Boston, MA
Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, NY
The Hirshhorn Museum of Art in Washington DC
Portland Museum of Art, Portland, ME