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Terry Rodgers



Terry Rodgers

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Terry Rodgers (born September 11, 1947) is an American figurative painter known for his large scale canvases that focus on portraying contemporary body politics. He was born in Newark, New Jersey and raised in Washington, D.C., He graduated cum laude from Amherst College in Massachusetts in 1969, with a major in Fine Arts. His strong interest in film and photography influenced his style in the direction of representational realism in art. In 2005, three of his monumental figurative canvases were presented at the Valencia Biennial. Abroad he has had solo exhibitions in galleries in Amsterdam, Zurich and Milan, and participated in group shows around the world. In the United States, he has had solo gallery exhibitions in New York, Los Angeles, Atlanta, and Chicago. He has also exhibited at numerous museums in the US including the Museum of Contemporary Art Jacksonville, the Erie Art Museum and the Mobile Museum of Art. Abroad, his work has been exhibited at the Stedelijk Museum - 's-Hertogenbosch, the Kunsthalle der Hypo-Kulturstiftung in Munich, the Museum Franz Gertsch in Burgdorf, the Museum Folkwang in Essen, the Gemeentemuseum Helmond, the Scheringa Museum of Realist Art in Spanbroek and at the Kunsthal Rotterdam.
Rodgers began drawing as a young child. He seriously began experimenting with color when his mother gave him her set of old paints. As a precocious artist, he was seducing unsuspecting friends to model for him in increasingly compromising attire. Imagine his delight, when at drawing classes at the Corcoran School of Art, he had the good fortune to be confronted with an enormous, loosely fat, woman considerably his elder. “There were these exquisite layers of flesh. Rolls of it. It wasn’t about learning how to draw, or sex or social crap. It was about opening my eyes.”

About the same time as Rodgers' eyes were falling out of his head, his photographer grandfather gave him a huge camera and took him to their native Norway. Hundreds of pictures later it was clear: drawing and photography were it for him. By the time Rodgers arrived at Amherst College in Massachusetts, he was drawing regularly. Each night he joined several other students to draw from a model, training his hand to automatically respond to what his eyes told him. A few lines would render the essence of a gesture, and what came to matter was a sense of authenticity rather than perfect likeness. When Rodgers exited college in 1969, the contemporary art scene, dominated by the American School of Abstraction, was fast becoming the playground of the emerging Pop Art movement. Though this meant the return of some kind of figuration, and he was quick to take in the insights these movements offered, Rodgers continued to search for another non-abstract way to express himself, one that included a greater awareness of our physicality. He moved to a commune with some musicians, filmmakers, and other creatives, positioning himself outside the prevailing culture. Here he painted with independence. When the boom of the 80’s and 90’s came, Rodgers hit the streets again, looking for faces…faces to render a transformed America — transformed by money, coke, glamour and celebrity with the media defining it all the way. Here was a wildly affluent America. “I see a world driven by desire and crushed by pseudo satisfaction…wanting better bodies, more beautiful faces, expensive clothes, stunning architecture, exclusivity. “ He took on the challenge of sketching a fresco of contemporary America. “My hope is that these paintings reveal fragile, genuine human beings trying to figure it out.”



























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