As I enter my 73rd year, it occurs to me that if I had any common sense, I should be taking it easy. Ann keeps telling me to, but the trouble is I still find inspiration and huge satisfaction in making my paintings, so I don’t think I will be hanging up my walking boots anytime soon!
With four different exhibitions of my work opening in America this year the prospects are very exciting. I want to tell everyone on my mailing list about them, in the hope that you will get the chance to see the work.
May 30 – August 29 2019
Yale Center for British Art, New Haven, Conneticut
Recently acquired a set of six paintings, entitled Heraclitus III, executed in 2017 on my third trip down the Colorado through the Grand Canyon.
To showcase this acquisition the exhibition Tony Foster: Watercolour Diaries, Cornwall to Colorado, curated by Duncan Robinson, former director of the Yale Center for British Art and the Fitzwilliam Museum, and Elisabeth Fairman, Chief Curator of Rare Books and Manuscripts, will include artworks from my first exhibition at the Center (1985), as well as work painted in 2018 for my upcoming major project About Time.
The title of the Yale acquisition Heraclitus III was inspired by the philosopher’s statement “no person ever steps in the same river twice”. As a river is ever changing, so are we all. I have certainly changed from the sprightly fellow who first worked in the Canyon in 1989 !
June 8 – I will be “in conversation” with Duncan Robinson as part of the two week “Festival of Arts and Ideas” in New Haven.
I am deeply grateful to Duncan Robinson, Jane Woodward and the Foster Art and Wilderness Foundation for their help in making this acquisition by Yale possible.
June 14 – July 29 2019
Gail Severn Gallery, Ketchum, Idaho Tony Foster Watercolour Diaries: Great Basin & Copper Basin.
During the summer of 2018 I returned to one of my favourite places to paint - The Rocky Mountains. I spent a few weeks camping, wandering and painting in Idaho’s Copper Basin, a wilderness area with spectacular views of the Pioneer Mountains.
The exhibition will include 12 new works, all of which will be for sale.
As my contribution to the major project Mirage: Energy and Water in the Great Basin, organised by The Sun Valley Center for the Arts, my diptych, A Walk Across Death Valley, chronicling one of my most difficult hikes in 1991, and a painting of the White Mountains in California, the lowest and highest points respectively of the Great Basin, will be included in my show at Gail Severn Gallery.
July 5 – Gallery Walk
July 6 – Artist’s Talk – both open to the public at Gail Severn Gallery.
June 24 – July 1 2019
With a handful of Idaho-based companions, I will raft the Green River, Utah from the Gates of Ladore to Split Mountain. During the journey I will begin a series of paintings that reflect not only the river as it exists today but also reveal it as a repository of fifty million year-old fossils.
July 9 – July 17 2019
Buffalo Bill Center of the West / Whitney Western Art Museum, Cody, Wyoming
I will be Artist in Residence, working to complete the Green River paintings. During my tea breaks I will take time out to explain my approach and process to museum visitors. The Buffalo Bill Center of the West is one of the country’s premier institutions presenting, preserving and researching art and artefacts of the American West. An exhibition of my earlier paintings will be on display, curated by Karen McWhorter, Scarlett Curator of Western American Art at the Whitney Museum.
October 11 – February 9 2020
Tucson Museum of Art, Tucson, Arizona
Works from Arid Lands, my fifth project (1996), will be included in The Western Sublime: Majestic Landscape Paintings of the American West.
November 16 2019- February 17 2020
The Museum of Northern Arizona, Flagstaff, Arizona
The museum has reunited the majority of the paintings from my twelfth project, Searching for a Bigger Subject (2008), and will present them to celebrate the centennial anniversary of the Grand Canyon’s designation as a National Park.
The exhibition was created to “contrast the world’s two most powerful subjects – Mt Everest and the Grand Canyon”. It was shown in the Royal Cornwall Museum, Truro; the Royal Watercolour Society, London; Gerald Peters Galleries in New York, Dallas and Santa Fe and Phoenix Art Museum.
Award winning documentary film-maker, David Schendel, intends to make a full-length documentary about me and my work. “Tony Foster Journeys” production will start in June 2019. He has gained the support of the Redford Center (Robert Redford’s organisation) and is now fund-raising. If you would like to make a donation / investment towards the cost of making the film, your donation could be very tax efficient. For details go to: https://redfordcenter.org or contact firstname.lastname@example.org
“Angels” who offer $5,000 will receive a specially created limited-edition print signed by me and David.
New Major Project
I have been working on my next major project “About Time – Watercolour Diaries from Hours to Aeons” and have completed ten paintings, but don’t envisage the exhibition ready to show for two or three years. I will be publishing the “prospectus” for this philosophical and thought-provoking show on my website: www.tony-foster.co.uk in the near future.
The Foster Art and Wilderness Foundation
None of the above would have been possible without The Foster Art and Wilderness Foundation. They have provided steadfast financial and professional support in pulling together this bumper year of frenetic Foster related activities.
In addition to lending paintings and helping to facilitate the exhibitions, they have grown into a significant public art venue last year welcoming over 6,500 visitors. The Foster presents Sacred Places and Exploring Beauty as well as an overview exhibition of all my journeys. Visitors come to see the art and attend lectures including My Journey with Tony, a series presented by travelling companions and advisors, or the Artist Explorer series presenting the work and perspective of other artists. Students and teachers come for exhibition tours and adults are welcomed to watercolour and journal making classes. The beautiful space also serves as a venue for the regional community, welcoming environmental groups for meetings and social gatherings.
I hope you will visit The Foster, 940 Commercial Street, Palo Alto CA 94303 USA . You are assured of a warm and friendly reception ! If you are not already on their mailing list, please join. The newsletters announce events at “The Foster” and the website provides links to video recordings of the lecture series. Visit their website: www.thefoster.org
Good Luck for 2019! I hope our paths will cross.
Exploring Beauty – Watercolour Diaries from the Wild will be previewing at The Foster Art and Wilderness Foundation, 940 Commercial Street, Palo Alto, CA, on 4/5th March 2017. All welcome. Open by appointment from March 6th 2017.
For more information please visit thefoster.org
Exploring Beauty – Watercolour Diaries from the Wild is now showing at Royal Cornwall Museum, Truro until 12th November.
The exhibition will then open at The Foster Art and Wilderness Foundation, Palo Alto, California in early March 2017.
My new Exhibition “Exploring Beauty – Watercolour Diaries from the Wild” opened at the Royal Watercolour Societies, London gallery on June 9th.
The most exciting development in my career was launched at the end of February 2016 - The Foster Art and Wilderness Foundation opened its doors.
Conceived by a long-term friend, collector and patron, the Foundation mission is: “to share artist explorer Tony Foster’s powerful exhibitions of watercolour journeys to inspire reflection, discussion, and education about art, wilderness and the natural world”.
The Foundation’s beautifully designed space at 940 Commercial St, Palo Alto, California opened with my complete exhibition "Sacred Places from the American Southwest", alongside groups of works from many of my earlier series and contextualising materials.
Exhibitions can be viewed by appointment Monday through Friday. Please contact the Foundation for details at email@example.com.
For more information please see the Foundation's website at thefoster.org .
Exploring Beauty - Watercolour Diaries From The Wild
by Tony Foster
Beauty: (n) The quality that gives pleasure to the sight or aesthetic pleasure generally; a particular grace or excellence; a fine specimen of its kind.
My new exhibition is entitled “Exploring Beauty - Watercolour Diaries From The Wild”. It opened with a solo show at the Royal Watercolour Society, London on June 8th 2016 before travelling to Royal Cornwall Museum, Truro, UK and is now showing at the Foster Art and Wilderness Foundation, Palo Alto.
In it I hope to promote the idea that making art which is philosophically positive and beautiful about some of the world’s most extraordinary places is an acceptable practice for a Contemporary Artist. I want to provoke a discussion about the nature of beauty and our varied perception of it, and why making beautiful objects is not longer a part of the artist’s required skill-set.
I'm delighted and honoured that my major painting ' From Point Sublime Looking South South East - 6 Days Searching / 13 Days on Site ' is included in Phoenix Art Museum's marvellous exhibition 'Leonardo da Vinci's Codex Leicester and the Power of Observation'.
Their exhibition presents the original 72 manuscript pages of Leonardo's codex and puts them in the context of other artists who have been influenced by his curiosity, direct observation and thinking on paper.
Included in the exhibition are works by artists who share aspects of Leonardo's practices - Claude Monet, Gustave Courbet, Ansel Adams, Edward Weston, Eadweard Muybridge, Harold Edgerton, Kiki Smith, Bill Viola and Tony Foster.
Two of Tony Foster's Everest paintings will be included in the exhibition "Time Frames Marking Time" at the West Beth Gallery, New York City, May 24th to June 15th 2014. He will deliver his lecture "Paining Everest" Weds 11th June in the evening.
Sacred Places, Watercolour Diaries from the American Southwest opens at the Museum of Northern Arizona (MNA) in Flagstaff and to the public on Sunday, June 16 through Sunday, October 13, 2013. Early viewing with the artist and exhibit curator will take place at MNA’s 7th Annual Gala on Saturday, June 15 and the Brunch and Curator’s Reception on Sunday, June 16.
A slideshow lecture by Tony Foster will take place on Sunday, June 16 at 2 pm. The artist will talk about sacred places in this region and hiking into them. The lecture is open to the public and is included with Museum admission.
An Illustrated talk by Tony Foster on Thursday 16th April 2013 at 7.00pm at The Town Hall, Truro.
An Illustrated talk by Tony Foster on Saturday, 9th March at 7.30pm at Tywardreath School.
“Hot and Wet – Hot and Dry – Painting Rainforests and Deserts” lecture at Fowey Royal Yacht Club on Wednesday 5th December 2012 and for the Royal Geographical Society in Truro Town Hall on Thursday 16th April 2013.
Tony has completed two new paintings for the prestigious fundraising exhibition “West Select”. Neither painting has been shown before.
A major painting - “Seven Days by Havasu Creek – Navajo and Fifty Foot Falls · Looking West Southwest” records Tony’s time spent in one of the most beautiful places on earth.
The smaller painting – “Looking North from Between Yaki Point and Shoshone Point” was begun on site in 2008, but not finished until 2012.
Eliocom, a French production company, invited Tony to paint in the Alps for a new 60 minute documentary “Artists d’en Haut”.
Tony chose a location with a dramatic view of Mont Blanc and spent a week working on site, the film crew following his every move.
Tony has started planning his major new project “Beauty – the Last Taboo”. Read more in Tony's prospectus for this project: Beauty – The Last Taboo: Watercolour Diaries from Wild Places
'In 1983 I was in New York attempting to find a gallery to represent me. Ronald Feldman, a potent force in Contemporary Art, took some of my paintings home to consider for the weekend. At our subsequent meeting he told me “I’ve really enjoyed having these around, but I’ve decided that I can’t represent you – the work is just too beautiful"
In Contemporary Art, where Artists are free to tackle any subject – violence, decay, conflict, pollution and death – I realised that beauty had become the last taboo.'...
The complete Sacred Places: Watercolour Diaries from the American South West exhibition of 32 paintings was acquired by a private collector motivated by a desire to maintain it intact for donation to a Foundation or Museum (yet to be named).
Gerald Peters Gallery is currently working to establish a small tour for the whole show before it finds its permanent home.
Tony Foster's new exhibition 'Sacred Places - Watercolour Diaries from the American Southwest', the result of 30 months work, opens at Gerald Peters Gallery, 1011 Paseo de Peralta, Santa Fe, New Mexico, NM87501 on Friday May 18th and will run until July 14th 2012.
Former Los Angeles Times reporter Ann Japenga has posted an appreciative article about Tony's early work entitled Tony Foster: Icebergs and Ocotillo
In September 2010 Tony was invited by Stanford University, California, to give a series of lectures to celebrate the dedication of a collection of his works being installed in Stanford's new Y2E2 faculty lounge.
'All societies need to express their reverence for extraordinary places.
Tribal societies express it through their religious practices and ceremonies. Our own, more secular society, expresses it by designating National and State Parks, National Forests and Monuments, thus rendering them sacrosanct. It could be argued that the Environmental Movement is the secular means by which we express our need to honour the Earth.
The American South West encompasses many places of extraordinary resonance and beauty...'
Tony Foster's book, Painting at the Edge of the World, has attracted considerable publicity, having been widely featured in magazines and newspapers world-wide.
The launch of Tony Foster's book, Painting at the Edge of the World, The Watercolours of Tony Foster, was opened at The Royal Watercolour Society (RWS), Bankside Gallery, London, UK on 2 July 2008 by Professor Duncan Robinson, Master of Magdalene College, Cambridge.
The launch of Tony Foster's new book, Painting at the Edge of the World, The Watercolours of Tony Foster, was opened at The Royal Cornwall Museum (RCM), Truro, Cornwall, UK on 18 March 2008 by Tim Smit, Chief Executive of the Eden Project.
The exhibition of Watermarks commenced with a private viewing at the Royal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery, Exeter, on the evening of Friday 28 March 2003.
The exhibition was opened by Duncan Robinson, Director of the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge.