Tracery and Plane: Paintings by Robert Kushner
February 8 – March 23, 2018
Gallery talk: Wednesday, February 7, 6 p.m., in the gallery
Reception: Thursday, February 8, 5-7 p.m., in the gallery

The 2018 Farley Moody Galbraith Endowed Exhibition features the work of internationally recognized artist Robert Kushner. Kushner will give a gallery talk about his work on Wednesday, February 7 at 6 pm in the Sarah Moody Gallery of Art, 103 Garland Hall on UA campus. A reception will be held Thursday, February 8, from 5 to 7 p.m. in the gallery.

Kushner (b. 1949) is an American painter known as a founder of the Pattern and Decoration art movement of the 1970s and 1980s. Kushner’s work combines organic representational elements with abstracted geometric forms in a way that is both decorative and modernist. Since the 1980s, he has used a full spectrum of color with gold, silver and patinated copper leaf to render the flowers and leaves, which have become his signature motif. “I never get tired of pursuing new ideas in the realm of ornamentation. Decoration, an abjectly pejorative dismissal for many, is a very big, somewhat defiant declaration for me,” he says.  Kushner draws from multiple influences, including Islamic and European textiles, Henri Matisse, Georgia O’Keeffe, Charles Demuth, Ito Jakuchu, Qi Baishi and Wu Changshuo.

His work has been included in the Whitney Biennial and Venice Biennale and is in prominent public collections including Museum of Modern Art; Metropolitan Museum of Art; Whitney Museum of American Art; National Gallery of Art; Corcoran Gallery of Art; Tate Gallery, London; San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; Honolulu Museum of Art Spalding House; Denver Art Museum; Uffizi Gallery; J. Paul Getty Trust; Ludwig Museum in St. Petersburg, Russia; and Philadelphia Museum of Art. Public commissions include sites in New York City, Tokyo, California and Washington, DC, as well as an 80-foot marble mosaic in the new Raleigh-Durham International Airport.

Selected Works

White Lotus Shaft of Light III, 2008

Oil, acrylic, gold leaf, and silver leaf on canvas

55 x 72 inches


White Lotus Shaft of Light VI, 2008

Oil, acrylic, gold leaf, moon gold, copper leaf, and silver leaf on canvas

72 x 55 inches


White Lotus Shaft of Light II, 2008

Oil, acrylic, gold leaf, and silver leaf on canvas

72 x 55 inches


Salome, 2014

Oil, acrylic, and gold leaf on canvas

108 x 36 x 1 1/2 inches



Nymphaea Shaft of Light V, 2008

Oil, acrylic, gold leaf, copper leaf, and silver leaf on canvas

72 x 55 inches


Nelumbo et Nymphaea, 2008 (Detail)

Oil, acrylic, gold leaf, silver leaf, and mica on canvas

72 x 432 inches


Two Old Friends, 2015

Oil, acrylic, and palladium leaf on canvas

72 x 144 inches (overall); 72 x 72 inches (each)


Camellias and Cacti, 2014

Acrylic on polyester curtains

142 x 59 inches (each); 142 x 413 inches (overall)


Amaryllis on Parade, 2005

Gold leaf, ink, and acrylic on Japanese paper

39 x 109 inches


Back To Top