“One thing that is very clear to me is that my life and my work are very intertwined. For me the creation of my art, be it painting, drawing or printmaking, integrates my life experiences, my beliefs and my heritage. I hope that my viewers will also bring their own lenses created by their identity, their family history and their experiences.”
- Ruth Weisberg
Ruth Weisberg: Of Memory, Time & Place brings together over 25 works that span six decades of the artist’s practice as a painter and printmaker. It features iconic works from Weisberg’s artistic career — Waterborne (1973), A Year Passes (1985) and Questioning Veronese (2011) — where she explored the interconnectedness and continuity of successive generations. Anchored in themes of personal and familial memory; ancestral knowledge embedded in her Jewish heritage, and admiration for Western art history, her unframed canvases, and works on paper create liminal spaces that collapse the time and space, where family, friends from the present and past share space with great painters and Holocaust survivors and those who perished. The Shtetl, A Journey and Memorial, a limited- edition artist book that she wrote and illustrated comprising 9 intaglio prints in 1971, lies at the heart of the exhibition. In it she paid homage to the small Jewish towns in Poland (where her ancestors are from) before the Holocaust. This significant work was a touchstone for her artistic and professional career as it propelled her move from Michigan to Los Angeles in 1969.
Born and raised in Chicago, Weisberg moved to Ann Arbor to pursue her higher studies, she completed her B.Ed (1964), after spending three years in Perugia, Italy where she earned a Laurea di Belle Arti in 1962, and MFA (1965). Since her arrival in Los Angeles, Weisberg has been a formidable influence and mentor to decades of artists as an artist, Professor of Fine Arts and former Dean at the University of Southern California Roski School of Art and Design. Weisberg was the Director of the USC Initiative for Israeli Arts and Humanities, and the founder of the Jewish Artists Initiative of Southern California. Her first major survey in Los Angeles was in 1979 at the Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery. She and Judy Chicago were the first two artists exhibited at The Women’s Building, Los Angeles. Their solo exhibitions inaugurated that venue. Weisberg has had more than 80 solo exhibitions and nearly 200 group exhibitions internationally, including a major exhibition at the Norton Simon Museum, Pasadena and a retrospective, at the Skirball Museum, Los Angeles as well as a solo exhibition at the Huntington in San Marino. She is the recipient of many prestigious awards, some notable ones are the Printmaker Emeritus Award from the Southern Graphic Council International in 2015 and the Foundation for Jewish Culture’s 50th Anniversary Cultural Achievement Award in 2011. She has been the recipient of the Art Leadership Award, National Council of Art Administrators and the Women’s Caucus for Art Lifetime Achievement Award, 2009. Ruth Weisberg is represented by Jack Rutberg Fine Arts, Los Angeles.
Curated by Srimoyee Mitra.