Budd Hopkins (1931 - 2011)
Cape Fall Study #1, 1963
Oil on paper
14 x 11 inches
Signed at lower right: Hopkins '63
Titled on old backing board: “Cape Fall Study” #1
Private collection, San Francisco, California
Budd Hopkins was born in Wheeling, West Virginia in 1931, and at the age of two survived polio. He earned a bachelor’s degree in art history from Oberlin College in 1953 and afterward settled in New York City, where he soon made his artistic reputation. He also maintained a summer studio on Cape Cod, Massachusetts and was an active member of the Provincetown Art Association.
Hopkins came of age as an artist in the 1950's becoming friendly with Mark Rothko, Robert Motherwell, Franz Kline and other artists of the New York School. He began to exhibit energetic, athletic abstraction at Poindexter Gallery in 1956 and continued to paint and exhibit for the rest of his life.
As his painterly, gestural approach eventually gave way to more hard-edged style, Hopkins maintained that the emotional drive that initially attracted him to Abstract Expressionism remained at the core of his work.
Hopkins has exhibited widely since 1955. In 1976 he was awarded a Guggenheim fellowship for painting. His work, which by the late 1960’s included Mondrian-like paintings of huge geometric forms anointed with flat planes of color, is in the collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Corcoran Gallery of Art in Washington and the British Museum, among others.
His work won him a number of fellowships and awards. In 1972, the West Virginia Arts and Humanities Council awarded him its Commission Prize. In 1976, he received the John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship for Painting and in '79 he received a fellowship from the National Endowment of the Arts. He also won a special project grant from the New York State Council on the Arts in 1982.
Hopkins work has been exhibited widely including the Smithsonian Institution and the Library Congress in Washington, D. C.; the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Houston Museum of Fine Arts, and the San Francisco Museum, among others.
Universities and Colleges which have shown Hopkins paintings and sculpture include his alma mater, Oberlin; Princeton, Yale, Denison, Drew, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, DePauw, Williams, Brandeis, Middlebury, North Carolina, Michigan State, Reed, Bradford, Connecticut, Alabama, Bennington, and the City College of New York.