The exhibition will consist of twenty-eight paintings dating from the 1960s through the 1990s. The canvases represent the many aspects of HELIKER’s life: views of the Maine coast with clam diggers and male bathers; still lifes of flowers and kitchen motifs; Spanish landscapes; a portrait of his friend the painter Edwin Dickinson; self-portraits in the studio as well as other young artists at work in the studio.
JOHN HELIKER (1909-200), one of the premier figurative painters of the second half of the nineteenth century, was born in Yonkers, New York. He studied painting at the Art Students League from 1927 to 1929. HELIKER had the first of three one-man exhibitions at the Maynard Walker Gallery in New York in 1936, and in the later 1930s he was doing drawings for the New Masses and joined the easel division of the WPA Federal Art Project. When the Maynard Walker Gallery closed in 1941, HELIKER began his long association with the Kraushaar Galleries, where he exhibited his work for more than fifty years.
HELIKER taught at the Art Students League, the New York Studio School (he was a founding faculty member), and in the MFA Painting Program at Parsons School of Design. His work was exhibited nationally in the major survey exhibitions of the Carnegie Institute, the Brooklyn Museum, the Cleveland Museum, the Corcoran Gallery, the Museum of Modern Art’s Abstract Painting in America, and many others. The Whitney Museum of American Art honored HELIKER with a mid-career retrospective in 1968, and he has been included in numerous Whitney Museum annuals and biennials. He was represented at the Bicentennial Exhibition AMERICA: 1976 at the Corcoran Gallery of Art in Washington, DC which traveled through the country.
Among the artist’s many awards are the Prix de Rome (1948), a Guggenheim Fellowship (1951), three Ford Foundation Purchase awards, and numerous awards from the National Academy of Design including the Benjamin Altman prizes for Landscape, Figure and Still Life.
JOHN HELIKER: A TRIBUTE MAY 12 - JUNE 19, 2012
Oil on linen, 25 1/8 x 21 inches
Painted circa 1975
Oil on linen, 9 1/8 x 12 inches
Painted circa 1987
Oil on linen, 14 x 17 inches
Painted circa 1992
Interior with Hanging Plant
Oil on linen, 20 x 18 inches
Painted circa 1988
Still Life with Shell
Oil on linen, 24 x 20 inches
Signed (at lower right): Heliker
Painted circa 1987
Oil on masonite, 15 7/8 x 12 inches
Painted circa 1982
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