Wayne Thiebaud Art

The Influence and Legacy of Wayne Thiebaud

Wayne Thiebaud 1920 – 2021

Wayne Thiebaud, one of America’s most beloved artists, best knows for his luscious paintings of cakes and pies, died at his home in Sacramento on Saturday, December 25th. He was 101 years old.

Thiebaud was not just a painter and printmaker; he was also a mentor and teacher. He taught at the University of California, Davis (UC Davis) for more than thirty years, where he was given a lifetime Professor Emeritus title.

He continued painting, and playing tennis, into his 1ooth year.

In 1962, Thiebeaud’s work was shown alongside the works of Roy Lichtenstein, Andy Warhol, Jim Dine, Edward Ruscha and others, in the groundbreaking show New Painting of Common Objects, at the Pasadena Art Museum. The show introduced Pop Art to the America and the rest of the world.

His use of colors and subject matter had a profound influence on Jonas Wood, whose works were included in the 2020 show Wayne Thiebaud Influencer a New Generation at the Manetti Shrem Museum of Art at UC Davis, to celebrate the artist’s 100th birthday.

Wood was able to arrange a meeting with Thiebaud in 2018. “Experiencing Wayne’s world for an afternoon was excellent,” Wood wrote on his Instagram account.

In 1967, Sports Illustrated commissioned Thiebaud to go to Wimbledon to paint his impressions of the tennis tournament. The result was of Thiebaud’s trip was a spread in the June 24, 1968 issue of Sports Illustrated of four paintings of Wimbledon by the artist.

As an homage to Wayne Thiebaud, Jonas Wood had one of his tennis drawings featured on the cover of Racquet magazine in 2018.

Please contact us if you would like more information about the work of Jonas Wood, Roy Lichtenstein, Andy Warhol Jim Dine, Ed Ruscha or any of the other fine artists whose works are available at VFA.


References:
Wayne Thiebaud Influencer a New Generation. Manetti Shrem Museum of Art. March 2019.
Julia Halperin. The American Painter Wayne Thiebaud, Who Transformed Cakes Into Symbols of Joy and Longing, Has Died at 101. Artnet News. December 27, 2021.
Shawn Ghassemitari. Jonas Wood Unveils New Gagosian Exhibition in Hong Kong. Hypebeast/HypeArt. November 24, 2021.
Louis Menand. Before Roy Lichtenstein Went Pop. The New Yorker. July 21, 2021.
Karen Rosenberg. For Andy Warhol, Faith and Sexuality Intertwined. The New York Times. December 2, 2021.
Philip Kennicott. Wayne Thiebaud’s artistic eye was so much keener than pop art confections. The Washington Post. December 27, 2021.
Michael Kimmelman. Wayne Thiebaud, Playful Painter of the Everyday, Dies at 101. The New York Times. December 26, 2021.
Wayne Thiebaud

Wayne Thiebaud Likes Chocolate with Water

Wayne Thiebaud wakes up early every day, works in his Sacramento studio until noon, takes time out for a game of doubles tennis, then he’s back in the studio at two.

Thiebaud will turn 99 on November 15th. He still likes to eat the pies, cakes and ice cream that he paints, but he’s had to modify his diet in recent years. “I now eat chocolate ice cream and water mixed up together.” he said. “It’s lighter.”

After teaching at Sacramento College for nine years, Thiebaud went on to teach at UC Davis from 1959 to 1991. Even after his official retirement, he voluntarily taught a few days a week and was awarded Professor Emeritus. He still mentors students in his studio, which he says is educational for him.

Wayne Thiebaud Mural Restoration in Sacramento

Wayne Thiebaud has lived and worked at his Sacramento home for forty-seven years. The Sacramento Municipal Utility District Headquarters (SMUD) building was completed in 1959, and so was the mural that Thiebaud was commissioned to create on two of the building’s walls.

The total restoration of the SMUD headquarters cost $72 million and took five years to complete. The mosaic mural had some missing tiles and needed some polishing and refinishing. Thiebaud’s signature is on the front wall’s lower right corner.

The building was listed in the National Register of Historic Places in 2010.

Wayne Thiebaud’s Patience and Process

Wayne Thiebaud’s early food paintings now garner as much as $8 million. His food paintings, with their frosting-like brush strokes, are what got him critical acclaim, but his portraits and mountain paintings are as rich in texture and color as his pieces of cake.

He sometimes reworks a painting, like Pineapple Tray, which he painted in 1972 and reworked in 1990 and 1992. He blames this compulsion on his early career as a commercial artist. “I still feel like I have an art director looking over my shoulder.” he said.

Thiebaud began printmaking at Crown Point Press in San Francisco in 1964. He uses etching and aquatint to create a sensual feel and quality that is unique to his work.

His paintings and prints of mountains are particularly fascinating because of the unusual perspective that he utilizes to represent them.

“There was the sort of opposite aspect of venerating them and having them be spiritual sources.” he said in a Huffington Post interview. “That extreme — from the sublime to the silly — was something that interested me.

Another idea was the idea of position of mountains. We mostly see them  — and almost have to see them — from afar, unless we are walking in them or hiking in them or driving in them. There is this tendency to see mountains pretty much in the distance and I just wondered what would happen if you tried to get them as close as possible.  It seems that they are almost coming to overwhelm you: or that they seem somewhat ominous in their character.”

Country City, available at VFA is an example of Thiebaud’s vision of an extreme view of a mountain, positioning it as close to a city as possible.

Thiebaud is still working on paintings and prints of mountains, but has also be working on what he says is a preoccupation that he’s had for the past three years: “I have about 45 bad paintings of clowns and six etchings.” he said, “I want to be able to paint any damn thing I want at any time, in any way that I want to do it.”

The Work of Wayne Thiebaud at VFA

Please contact us if you would like more information about Country City or any of the other fine work at VFA.

See More Wayne Thiebaud for Sale

Fine Artists and Master Printers

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There are artists whose vision can only be achieved by creating fine art prints. Techniques like oils, acrylics, watercolors or sculpture can not always achieve the result that the artist envisions.

The fine art prints for sale at VFA are created by fine artists, who often collaborate with master printmakers. Like a marriage, the relationship between artist and printer must be one of trust, respect and understanding. (Many of the relationships between artist and printer have lasted longer than many marriages.)

Picasso and His Printer in Paris

Intaglio printer, Roger Lacourière, worked with Matisse in the late 1920s and Picasso, beginning in the 1930s. Lacourière not only helped Picasso with his art work, he also introduced him to French art dealer Ambroise Vollard, who introduced, not just Picasso, but Cezanne, Renoir and other artists, then unknown, to the art world.

The shop was eventually taken over by Lacourière’s master printer Jacques Frélaut, and renamed “Lacourière et Frélaut.” The Atelier Lacourière et Frélaut is still a thriving business, where contemporary artists from all over the world go print their work.

Tourists in Paris pass by the workshop, with its simple facade, every day without a hint of the exciting work that is going on inside.

Chuck Close and His Printer in New York

Master printers are able to achieve the textures, colors and feel that the artist has conceived. With an artist like Chuck Close, who works with a myriad of colors and design, the print process can be very complex.

Close’s Self-Portrait, completed in 2015, took four years of work to create. This fine art print, available for sale at VFA, was done in more than 80 colors using 24 wood blocks.

Pace Prints and the Pace Gallery have been supporting artists like Chuck Close, Ed Ruscha, Keith Haring, Donald Sultan and many more, since the 1960s.

Alex Katz, Richard Diebenkorn and Their Printer in San Francisco

Crown Point Press is across the street from the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. The building was originally built in 1922 for the San Francisco News. Crown Point was established in 1962. In 1965 it began to publish prints by Richard Diebenkorn and Wayne Thiebaud.

Artists like Alex Katz, Ed Ruscha, Helen Frankenthaler and Robert Mangold have worked with the master printers at Crown Point.

The gallery at Crown Point Press is open to the public. Workshops in etching and photogravure are held every summer and are also open to the public.

Fine Art Prints for Sale at VFA

The fine art prints for sale at VFA are the works of great artists and master printers. For more information about the printing process, you can download our free Ebook: How to Identify and Buy Fine Art Prints.

Please visit or contact us if you would like more information about the work in our gallery.

Artwork for Sale - Tom Wesselman

New Artwork for Sale at Vertu Fine Art

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Vertu Fine Art is pleased to bring you the latest offerings from acclaimed masters. If you’re in reach of our Boca Raton gallery, please visit. Call for an appointment or stop in anytime. If you’re looking for specific artwork for sale, please contact us and we’ll do our best to source them for you.


Tom Wesselmann
Study for Seascape with Cumulus Clouds and Sky, 1991

Tom Wesselmann is a Pop Art favorite at Vertu. Study for Seascape with Cumulus Clouds and Sky, 1991, is a welcomed acquisition for any Wesselmann collector. The work, done in pencil and Liquitex on Bristol Board, shows off the bold lines and rich colors that are emblematic of the artist’s pallet. As with many Wesselmann works, the artistic influence of Matisse and de Kooning are evident in this horizontal composition, yet the piece is uniquely Wesselmann.


Andy Warhol
Flash-November 22,1963, (II.42)
1968

Flash-November 22,1963 II.42, 1968 is a work from Andy Warhol’s famous Flash series of prints. Warhol’s Flash portfolio consists of eleven works, all focused on the mass media coverage of President John F. Kennedy’s celebrity, particularly the attention paid to the 1963 assassination. This series of screenprints is based upon campaign posters, advertisements and mass media images. Warhol, who was fond of President Kennedy, was reportedly bothered by the overwhelming media coverage of the tragedy. Typical of Andy Warhol’s style, as a person and artist, the work is unemotional yet powerful.


Andy Warhol
Dracula – (II.264) from the “Myths” portfolio, 1981

Dracula II.264 from Myths, 1981 is another special Andy Warhol print on display at Vertu Fine Art. Dracula is one of ten iconic figures depicted in Warhol’s Myths portfolio. Each work in the series was created with “Diamond Dust” and is a 38” x 38” square. In this series, Dracula shares the spotlight with a unique arrangement of cast members, including Mickey Mouse, Superman, Howdy Doody, Wicked Witch of the West, Santa Claus, The Shadow and Uncle Sam. Warhol’s friends nicknamed this print, “Drella” – a combination of Dracula and Cinderella. The series is thought to represent various facets of Andy Warhol’s personality.


Wayne Thiebaud
Country City, 1988

It’s difficult not to smile when viewing Country City, 1988 by artist Wayne Thiebaud. Considered to be a forerunner of the Pop Art movement, Thiebaud, like a number of Pop Artists, worked as a commercial artist prior to becoming well-known for his style. Country City is emblematic of the artist’s exaggerated themes blended with realistic elements, such as Thiebaud’s hyper-realistic use of shadows. Whether you’re a Wayne Thiebaud collector or merely an admirer, this is a masterwork that is sure to engage and delight the viewer.


Christo
Wrapped Motorcycle/Sidecar, Project for Harley Davidson 1933 VL Model, 1997

Artists Christo and Jeanne-Claude are known worldwide for their “wrapped” works. They’ve wrapped monuments, buildings and a part of the Australian coastline. The duo has wrapped objects large and small, around the world. New Yorkers may remember their installation of The Gates in Central Park, which featured 7,503 saffron colored fabric paneled gates, looking like a golden river running through the park. New to VFA is this Christo Wrapped Motorcycle/Sidecar, Project for Harley-Davidson 1933 VL Model, 1997. Christo and Jeanne-Claude collectors will marvel at this print and enjoy owning a piece of history shared between the artist and the Harley Davidson company.


Roy Lichtenstein
Still Life with Red Jar, 1994

Roy Lichtenstein collectors will surely be glad to see the latest print, Still Life with Red Jar, at VFA. This famous Lichtenstein screenprint represents the Pop Artist’s comic book inspired style. The important role that Roy Lichtenstein played in launching the Pop Art movement, in terms of pop culture elements, unemotional affect and commercial styling are noticeable in this work.


Marilyn Minter
Gold Tip, 2009

The work of Marilyn Minter never fails to elicit a visceral response. That’s why Gold Tip is a photograph that we’re rather fond of at VFA. This 40” x 60” C-Print is one of five produced. The artist, who works out of New York City, has become known for a hyper-realistic style, charged with subjects that exude glamour, sexuality and eroticism. In 1989, Marilyn created a series of works based on hardcore pornographic images that stirred up controversy from women’s rights proponents. She defended her works and challenged critics to rethink their perspective, asking, “Does it change the meaning if a woman uses these kinds of images?” (Wikipedia). Today, the artist is known for her powerful works created via paint, photography and video production.


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Free Ebook: How to Identify and Buy Fine Art Prints

Free Ebook: How to Identify and Buy Fine Art Prints

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