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Richard Diebenkorn Studio Floor – Camelia, 1962

Richard Diebenkorn
Studio Floor – Camelia, 1962
Oil on canvas
26 3/8 x 21 3/4 inches

Richard Diebenkorn Interior with Flowers, 1961

Richard Diebenkorn
Interior with Flowers, 1961
Oil on canvas
56 3/4 x 38 3/4 inches

Richard Diebenkorn Untitled, 1965

Richard Diebenkorn
Untitled, 1965
Watercolor, ink and graphite on paper
13 7/8 x 17 inches

Richard Diebenkorn Untitled, 1981

Richard Diebenkorn
Untitled, 1981
Gouache and crayon on two sheets of joined paper
24 x 25 inches

Richard Diebenkorn Untitled, c. 1950-52

Richard Diebenkorn
Untitled, c. 1950-52
Gouache and ink on paper
14 x 17 inches

Richard Diebenkorn Untitled, c. 1960-66

Richard Diebenkorn
Untitled, c. 1960-66
Ink on paper
14 x 17 inches

Richard Diebenkorn Untitled, 1987

Richard Diebenkorn
Untitled, 1987
Acrylic and charcoal on two pieces of joined paper
36 x 22 inches

Richard Diebenkorn Untitled, c. 1960-66

Richard Diebenkorn
Untitled, c. 1960-66
Ink on paper
14 x 17 inches

Biography

Richard Diebenkorn was born in April, 1922 in Portland, Oregon. Diebenkorn served in the U.S. Marine Corps from 1943 until 1945, and upon his return from military duty to San Francisco, Diebenkorn took advantage of the G.I. bill to study at the California School of Fine Arts. It was at the California School of Fine arts where Diebenkorn met many serious contemporaries who would remain friends and artistic colleagues, including David Park, who would have an especially important influence on him. Diebenkorn and his wife, Phyllis, eventually settled in Sausalito, where the artist became a faculty member at the California School of Fine Arts in 1947. Fellow teachers there included Clyfford Still, Elmer Bischoff, Hassel Smith, Edward Corbett and David Park. Diebenkorn's first one-person exhibition was held at the California Palace of the Legion of Honor in 1948, a singular distinction for so young a painter. Diebenkorn eventually moved to Berkeley in late 1955 and continued working in a highly abstracted style. Diebenkorn then suddenly launched upon a path that veered dramatically from his extended early abstract period: he began to work in a "representational" mode, painting and drawing landscapes, figure studies and still lifes. With fellow artists David Park, Elmer Bischoff and later Frank Lobdell, he regularly worked on figure drawing from models; one of his largest bodies of work comprises exhaustively experimental figure drawings. He was also prolific in the still life genre: some of his nearly monochromatic still life drawings are among the most distinctive, and ravishing, in twentieth century art. In 1980 and 1981, Diebenkorn temporarily changed direction, producing a rather eccentric group of works on paper known as the "Clubs and Spades" drawings. They were, at least in part, inspired by the artist's lifelong interest in heraldic imagery, and their explorations of form would reappear in modified form at the very end of his life. Diebenkorn and Phyllis then moved from Berkeley to Santa Monica in 1966 where Diebenkorn accepted a teaching position at UCLA. Within several months of beginning work in his first Santa Monica studio, located in a neighborhood near the beach known as Ocean Park, the artist embarked on the great cycle of paintings and drawings known as the Ocean Park works. In doing so, he definitively ended his figurative approach, to invent a unique abstract language he would develop until 1988. In the spring of 1988, the couple moved from Santa Monica to Healdsburg, California, to a rural home near the Russian River, overlooking vineyards and scrub-oak hillsides. In his Healdsburg studio he worked in mostly small scale, producing some of the most gem-like, quirkily decorative, and perfectly executed, works of his life. Though he experienced serious health problems during much of his time in Healdsburg, he was able to continue his restless exploration of form and color and poetic metaphor. In late 1992, the Diebenkorns were forced to take up residence at their Berkeley apartment in order to be nearer to medical treatment. They looked forward to returning to Healdsburg, but were never able to do so. Richard Diebenkorn died there on March 30, 1993.
 

Richard Diebenkorn
Exhibition
Richard Diebenkorn
Paintings and Works on Paper, 1948-1992 February 18 - April 30, 2021 | Selected works on view through May 14, 2021
Richard Diebenkorn
Exhibition
Richard Diebenkorn
A Selection of Color Prints from the 1980s and 90s November 2 - December 23, 2017
Looking Back: 45 Years
Exhibition
Looking Back: 45 Years
October 8 - December 19, 2015
David Park, Richard Diebenkorn, Nathan Oliveira, Manuel Neri
Exhibition
David Park, Richard Diebenkorn, Nathan Oliveira, Manuel Neri
Figures and Landscapes September 4 - October 18, 2014
Four Decades
Exhibition
Four Decades
Drawings and Works on Paper May 1, 2014
The Art of Giving
Exhibition
The Art of Giving
December 9, 2010 – January 19, 2011
Paintings, Drawings, and Sculpture
Exhibition
Paintings, Drawings, and Sculpture
August 6 – 28, 2010
Abstract and Figurative
Exhibition
Abstract and Figurative
Highlights of Bay Area Painting January 8 – February 28, 2009
Richard Diebenkorn
Exhibition
Richard Diebenkorn
Figurative Works on Paper March 19 – April 26, 2003
Richard Diebenkorn: Paintings and Works on Paper, 1948-1992
Publication
Richard Diebenkorn: Paintings and Works on Paper, 1948-1992
David Park, Richard Diebenkorn, Nathan Oliveira, Manuel Neri
Publication
David Park, Richard Diebenkorn, Nathan Oliveira, Manuel Neri
Abstract and Figurative: Highlights of Bay Area Painting
Publication
Abstract and Figurative: Highlights of Bay Area Painting
Richard Diebenkorn
Publication
Richard Diebenkorn
Richard Diebenkorn | 7 Bay Area arts & entertainment events to check out this week
News
Richard Diebenkorn | 7 Bay Area arts & entertainment events to check out this week
SF Chronicle Datebook | By Tony Bravo
Richard Diebenkorn | Art & Exhibits Datebook Pick
News
Richard Diebenkorn | Art & Exhibits Datebook Pick
SF Chronicle Datebook by Tony Bravo February 18, 2021
REVIEW: DIEBENKORN FIGURATIVE WORKS ON PAPER
News
REVIEW: DIEBENKORN FIGURATIVE WORKS ON PAPER
San Francisco Chronicle | By Kenneth Baker April 4, 2003
Press
What set Bay Area painters apart in '60s
San Francisco Chronicle January 23, 2009
Press
Painter Diebenkorn found inspiration in New Mexico desert
San Francisco Chronicle October 18, 2007