Fairfield University Art Museum Presents a New Exhibition — Richard Lytle: A Retrospective

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Fairfield University Art Museum Presents a New Exhibition — Richard Lytle: A Retrospective  



FAIRFIELD, Conn. (August 14, 2017)—The Fairfield University Art Museum presents a new exhibition, Richard Lytle: A Retrospective,on view from Friday, September 15, 2017, through Saturday, February 3, 2018, in the museum’s Walsh Gallery in the Quick Center for the Arts at Fairfield University.

An opening reception, free and open to the public, will take place on Thursday, September 14, 2017, from 6 p.m. to 7:30 pm.

Richard Lytle (American, b. 1935) has been exhibiting his work internationally since the mid-1950s. He attended the Cooper Union, then graduated from Yale University with a BFA in 1957 and from Yale College of Art with an MFA in 1960. While still in graduate school, he was selected for Dorothy Miller’s seminal 1959 Sixteen Americans at the Museum of Modern Art in New York. He was in auspicious company, as this exhibition introduced the museum-going world to Jasper Johns, Frank Stella, Robert Rauschenberg, Louise Nevelson and Ellsworth Kelly among others.  At Yale, Lytle worked as a teaching assistant for Joseph Albers, and subsequently spent more than 40 years there as a professor of art. He served as acting dean of the Yale School of Art on three occasions and was the director of the graduate and undergraduate art studies programs as well.

Lytle’s paintings and drawings have been included in many solo and group exhibitions at the Whitney Museum of American Art, Yale University Art Gallery, and Harvard University, among others, and have been featured at American embassies around the world and at the World’s Fair in Seattle. He has received many prestigious awards including the Saint-Gaudens Medal and the Citation for Professional Achievement from Cooper Union. Lytle’s work may be found in many public and private collections including the Yale University Art Gallery, the Albrecht Kemper Museum of Art, the Museum of Modern Art, the Smithsonian American Art Museum, and the Williams College Museum of Art.

Mastery of color is a hallmark of Lytle’s work, which ranges from realist to abstraction, and which has always found its inspiration in the organic world. His dreamlike images move across spaces suggestive of landscapes, often in joyful biomorphic abstraction. Some focus on plants and natural shapes that are magnified beyond recognition, while others include elements chosen by the artist for their sensuous colors and patterning.

Richard Lytle’s connection to Fairfield University dates back to a commission he received for drawings for the exterior bas-relief sculptures for the Barone Campus Center in 1965. The sculptures are now visible inside and on the exterior of the new Tully Dining Commons building. Organized as part of the celebration of Fairfield University’s 75th anniversary, this retrospective is a celebration of that long relationship. It includes Lytle’s original drawings for the bas-reliefs—a recent gift to the museum from the artist—early charcoal drawings from the 1960s Nude Figures Series, a selection of Pod Series drawings from the 1970s, as well as watercolors and large oil paintings spanning the breadth of Lytle’s career.

A gallery talk on the exhibition with artist Richard Lytle and Fairfield University Associate Professor of Visual & Performing Arts Suzanne Chamlin, will take place on Wednesday, September 19 at 5 p.m. in the Walsh Gallery. A talk, entitled Drawing Into Sculpture, on the sculptural reliefs in the Tully Dining Commons of the Barone Campus Center, will be given by Adjunct Professor of Studio Art Michael Donovan on October 18 at 5 p.m.

Register for these free events at fuam.eventbrite.com.

The exhibition is curated by Carey Mack Weber, assistant director of the Fairfield University Art Museum. Venü Magazine is the exclusive media sponsor for the Fairfield University Art Museum, Walsh Gallery’s 2017-18 season.

The museum’s Walsh Gallery is located in the Quick Center for the Arts on the campus of Fairfield University, 200 Barlow Road, Fairfield, Conn. It is open to the public Wednesday through Saturday, noon to 4 p.m. when classes are in session. Admission is free. Please consult the museum website for details at https://www.fairfield.edu/museum/.

Image Credit: © Richard Lytle, Blue Cluster, 1975, oil on canvas. Courtesy of the artist.


Vol. 50, # 22

Fairfield University is a modern, Jesuit Catholic university rooted in one of the world’s oldest intellectual and spiritual traditions. More than 5,000 undergraduate and graduate students from the U.S. and across the globe are pursuing degrees in the University’s five schools. Fairfield embraces a liberal humanistic approach to education, encouraging critical thinking, cultivating free and open inquiry, and fostering ethical and religious values. The University is located on a stunning 200-acre campus on the scenic Connecticut coast just an hour from New York City.

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