Legends of The Bay Area: Robert Hudson
October 12 - November 17
Opening Reception October 12, 5-7 p.m.
Artist Talk: October 19, 2-3 p.m.
The exhibition features a variety of Hudson’s work, including sculptures, ceramic
pieces and drawings. As one of the progenitors of the West Coast assemblage movement,
Hudson is well known for his use of disparate everyday objects including everything
from an ornate heating grate to a broken enameled sink. The work can appear to be
an unruly mix of elements at first glance but soon reveals itself to be a carefully
ordered interlacing of textures, color and geometric forms.
Robert Hudson has an exhibition history that spans more than 50 years. A long-time
Bay Area resident, he was an integral part of the San Francisco Funk Art movement
in the 1960s and is a contemporary and longtime friend of Richard Shaw and William
T. Wiley. Hudson currently resides in Cotati, where he continues to create works
in his studio. Even his older works are continually evolving, as he often goes back
and changes or adds new elements to the original sculpture.
Hudson has a deep understanding of his materials, and he combines discarded artifacts
to create visual harmonies that make unexpected visual sense. We can see the shapes
playing off each other in his sculptures, as in his piece Crosscut, where
the line of triangular saw blade juts out in stark contrast to the smooth curves
of spirals, rods, and spheres surrounding the base. He also engages the viewer in
a bit of sleight of hand, as materials are not always what they seem to be. His
piece, Blue Rope Jar, fools the eye by including a rope actually made of
porcelain instead of fibres.
Despite the fact that some of the materials he uses are heavy or industrial, the
resulting sculptures have a lightness that is expressed both in tone and composition.
Hudson’s work has a signature wit that infiltrates all the media he works with,
and leaves the viewer with a smile.
Hudson’s works are included in the collections of the SF MoMa, NY MoMA, Whitney
Museum, Los Angeles County Museum, Smithsonian National Gallery, deYoung Museum,
DiRosa Preserve, Chicago Art Institute, The Art institute of Chicago, and the Stedelijk
Museum inAmsterdam. He has taught at several California art institutions including
the San Francisco Art Institute, the University of California at Berkeley, the University
of California at Davis, and the California College of Arts and Crafts.
This LEGENDS OF THE BAY AREA exhibition was made possible with the assistance of
the Patricia Sweetow Gallery.