The New York Academy of Art is pleased to announce an exhibition by award-winning musician, activist and accomplished artist John Mellencamp, September 29, 2022 and on display through November 15, 2022.
More information on The New York Academy Website HERE
“The art of John Mellencamp stretches the American brand of expressionism…Free in spirit, his work punches out at us. His is not a work that dabbles along the edges; it is every bit as strong-willed as the best of the American expressionists no matter the period with which we might make a comparison.” – Dr. Louis A. Zona
As his musical career flourished, Mellencamp began to paint earnestly in 1980 with an early affinity for portraiture influenced by the works of Otto Dix and Max Beckmann. His kinship with the German Expressionism of the early Twentieth century, with its existential focus on the human condition, serves as the foundation for the development of Mellencamp’s “oeuvre”.
His large-scale oil portraits and mixed-media pieces document America’s heart and soul, revealing unsettling but beautiful truths with a kind of anti-establishment frown, with a rich sense of narrative. Like his music, Mellencamp’s paintings are carefully composed through the structural requirements of harmony, rhythm and order, and is thematically in line with the small-town, earnest voice of the heartland.
John Mellencamp: American Paintings and Assemblages Coffee Table Art Book of Mellencamp’s work will be released October 18th via Rizzoli New York. This books documents “America’s heart and soul” with an “anti-establishment frown.” The book features 170 original works, essays from David L. Shirley and Bob Guccione Jr, and a forward written by Dr. Louis A. Zona. Mellencamp’s art is storytelling at its finest.
The exhibition is curated by Dexter Wimberly, an acclaimed American curator based in Japan who has organized exhibitions around the world. “Mellencamp is a very serious visual artist with a lot to say about life and the times we’re living in,” says Wimberly. “I’m thrilled to have an opportunity to share his work with a new audience of art enthusiasts and collectors.”
“Although we may primarily know Mellencamp as a rock star, one of the highest-selling of all time and a Hall of Famer, he is also a great painter, as this book shows. Not a musician who also paints... No, John legitimately belongs in the modern art pantheon,” says Bob Guccione Jr.
Mellencamp is a member of the Rock and Roll and Songwriters Halls of Fame, a recipient of the John Steinbeck Award, ASCAP Foundation’s Champion Award, The Woody Guthrie Award, the Americana Music Association’s Lifetime Achievement Award, and most recently, the Founders Award, the top honor assigned by the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers.
About New York Academy of Art: The New York Academy of Art was founded in 1982 by artists, scholars and patrons of the arts, including Andy Warhol, to foster a resurgence in the training of figurative and representational art. The Academy has since developed into a 501 (c)(3) non-profit cultural institution housing the nation’s first graduate school of figurative art, a continuing education program, the region’s most in-depth figurative art library, an extensive exhibition and lecture series, and iconic New York City events such as Take Home a Nude and Tribeca Ball.
About Dexter Wimberly: Dexter Wimberly is an American curator based in Japan who has organized exhibitions in galleries and institutions around the world including the Museum of Arts and Design in New York City, American University in Washington D.C., KOKI Arts in Tokyo and The Third Line in Dubai. His exhibitions have been reviewed and featured in publications including The New York Times and Artforum, and have received support from The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts and The Kinkade Family Foundation. Wimberly is a Senior Critic at the New York Academy of Art and the founder and director of the Hayama Artist Residency in Japan. He is also the co-founder and CEO of the online education platform CreativeStudy.