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Charles Meyers

Charles Meyers (1934-2013) was a New York artist who began his career in 1959, when he studied art history at Columbia University. He experimented with canvas shapes early in his career to create the illusion of space through modular forms. In the 1960s, he studied the technique of gold leaf (vero oro) in Italy and incorporated the delicate foil in his abstract paintings. Generally painted with a wide stroke, his canvases express powerful movement in vivid and muted colors. The striking use of gold leaf creates a unique pattern which serves to punctuate the rhythm of the image. Vivien Raynor speaks about his paintings in a New York Times article: “Charles Meyers […] paints with a broad brush that seems to be loaded with many colors. Each of his pictures is a field - a pool, rather -that churns with serpentine strokes in dark blues and browns veined with orange, yellow, turquoise, violet and so on. […] Mr. Meyers garnishes them with diagonals of gold leaf, a material that can arouse many historical associations, it smacks, in this case, of Vienna between the world wars, particularly because it is applied in irregular strands that bring out the Art Nouveau sinuousness of the painted forms.”

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About the Artist

Charles Meyers was educated at Columbia University, MFA Fine Arts/Art History and City College in New York City, BA; he completed post-graduate studies at Cranbrook Academy of Art and was a Professor of Studio Art and Art History at City College, CUNY and a long-time board member of Artists Talk on Art. He was the recipient of many honorariums, prizes and awards, including the prestigious Louis Comfort Tiffany Foundation Grant, the New Millennium Artist in Resident for the Newark Museum, Valparaiso Artist in Residence (Spain), Artist in Residence for the Department of the Interior, Everglades, Florida, and the 100 year old Bird Cliff Art Colony in Woodstock, NY. His work is in numerous museum and private collections and included in the New Museum project, www.boweryartisttribute.org.

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WORKS ON PAPER

The works on paper present another aspect of this complex artist. Similar to the paintings, the ink and watercolor artworks were created from a poem or a phrase, a written theme which materialized itself on paper. The blend of wording and line shapes a singular ethereal universe, one can sometimes recognize portraits or other figurative details that coalesce to create flowing forms. Each of these drawings is part of a visual diary which the artist defined as “daydreams” and thus a part of a larger visual puzzle.