• Art Green
    Dire Straits
    1979
    oil on canvas over plywood
    36 1/2 x 44 inches

  • Art Green
    Standard Deviations
    2011
    oil on canvas on MDF
    46 1/4 x 34 inches

  • Art Green
    Willful Representation
    2011
    oil on canvas on MDF
    54 x 46 inches

  • Art Green
    Hang Time
    2010
    oil on canvas on MDF
    83 x 40 1/2 inches

  • Art Green
    Same Difference
    2009
    oil on canvas over MDF
    48 1/2 x 43 inches

  • Art Green
    Panic Stop
    2009
    oil on canvas over MDF
    48 x 48 inches

  • Art Green
    Turning Point
    1983
    oil on canvas
    60 x 33 inches

  • Art Green
    Pressure Points
    1977
    oil on canvas
    29 x 43 inches

  • Art Green with Gladys Nilsson.
    Photograph by Jim Nutt


BIO

b. 1941

Art Green was born in Frankfort, Indiana. He came to Chicago to attend the School of the Art Institute, and graduated from there in 1965. In 1966, Green participated in the first Hairy Who exhibition organized by Don Baum at the Hyde Park Art Center. This show introduced six graduates of the Art Institute: Green, Suellen Rocca, Gladys Nilsson, Jim Nutt, Karl Wirsum, and Jim Falconer. Over the next three years, this same group would exhibit together in Chicago, New York, San Francisco, and Washington, D.C., both inspiring and popularizing the Chicago art movement that came to be known as Imagism.

Green also participated in two of three Phalanx shows at the Illinois Institute of Technology in 1965, as well as the 1968 Chicago & Vicinity Exhibition at the Art Institute and a three-person show at Allan Frumkin Gallery (the other artists were Ray Siemanowski and Jordan Davies). In 1969, at exactly the point that Imagism was lifting off and gaining wider exposure outside of Chicago, Green accepted a position teaching in Canada, and he moved away permanently. In spite of not living here, Green continued to have a presence in Chicago through his affiliation with Phyllis Kind Gallery, with whom he showed regularly in the ’70s and ’80s. He was, in this way, sort of a shadow member of the Chicago Imagists, a historical figure and at the same time an active member of the scene.

Like many of his Imagist colleagues, Green’s paintings are highly complex compositions characterized by a dazzling use of color and a graphic sensibility drawn from popular culture. Throughout his career, he has been a master manipulator of space. In his early work, this manifested itself in surreal scenes populated by enigmatic men, curious buildings, and monumental foodstuffs. Layers of depth are indicated and complicated by piles of word bubbles and images of splitting zippers or parting curtains. Green’s later paintings are increasingly dense, with layer upon layer of bands of color woven in front of or behind finely rendered landscapes of cities or bridges. These paintings become engrossing visual puzzles for the viewer, who is simultaneously drawn into their hyper-realistic landscapes and confounded by their impossible architecture.

Green’s more recent exhibitions include his 2005 retrospective at the Kitchener-Waterloo Art Gallery in Kitchener, Ontario, a 2008 solo show at the Stride Gallery in Calgary, Alberta, and a solo exhibition at the CUE Foundation in New York in 2009. His work is in the collections of the Art Institute, the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, the National Gallery of Canada, the Museum Moderner Kunst in Vienna, and the Smart Museum of Art at the University of Chicago.