|"Pies Pies Pies," 1961|
Mr. Thiebaud spent his entire career (except brief interludes) in California, where he trained at San Jose State and Sacramento State, and later became a long-serving professor at the University of California, Davis. He has been working as an artist at least since high school, when he spent summers apprenticing at Disney Studios. He was even an artist during his World War II service. According to artist acquaintances who have met him, Mr. Thiebaud is a genuinely humble and warm individual whose work and teaching have influenced hundreds.
Early works like "Pies Pies Pies" (above) have a distinct resemblance to advertising, at first glance, complete with bright lighting and dark shadows. But the more one looks, the more interesting the pies become, the shadows varying widely from plate-to-plate, the pies and crusts vibrating with complements, slathered down with brush strokes as luscious as whipped cream. He was said to have been so delighted with this painting that he laughed out loud. One can see why. The repetitive, simple shapes, the deceptively similar slices of pie, the different shadow colors and hints simply make me smile every time I look at the work.
|"Two Paint Cans," 1987|
|"24th Street Intersection," 1977|
|"Farm Channel," 1996|
Besides paint itself and as itself, clearly simple shapes and their arrangements fascinated the artist, as they have kept me staring more than once. Although firmly in the representational camp of artists rather than abstractionists, Mr. Thiebaud's pleasure in paint and its application is very appealing and his dedication to simplicity and colors continue to make me smile.
Favorite Artists 2
Favorite Artists 3--Grant Wood
Favorite Artists 4--Diego Velazquez
Favorite Artists 5--Andrew Wyeth