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Charley Harper

Charley Harper (1922 - 2007) was an American best known for his highly stylized wildlife prints, posters and book illustrations. In a style he called 'minimal realism', he captured the essence of his subjects with the fewest possible visual elements, saying: 'When I look at a wildlife or nature subject, I do not see the feathers in the wings, I just count the wings. I see exciting shapes, color combinations, patterns, textures, fascinating behavior and endless possibilities for making interesting pictures. I regard the picture as an ecosystem in which all the elements are interrelated, interdependent, perfectly balanced, without trimming or unutilized parts; and herein lies the lure of painting; in a world of chaos, the picture is one small rectangle in which the artist can create an ordered universe'. (From the catalogue for Charley Harper, Contemporary Arts Center, Cincinnati).

Drawings & works on paper

Black-Capped Chickadee - Details

Black-Capped Chickadee 1954
11 x 17 inches
Gouache and collage on paper on card
Provenance: Ford Motor Company, Michigan