Receive the latest information and updates about the artistFollow
Born and raised in Birmingham to a classically working class family who gave blood to the British cause from the Boer to the Second world war, bold commitment and brave decisions mark out the turning points that have guided John’s life. It is indicative perhaps that he would accept the role of teaching at the Royal College of Art but turn down an invitation to become its principal, moving instead to Australia. Walker had a strong influence as Dean of Victoria College of Art Melbourne in the 1980’s – where there is still a bursary in his name. In 1969 he was awarded the Harkness Fellowship to visit New York and subsequently he would be awarded the Guggenheim Fellowship in1981. By then Betty Parsons had found her way to his studio door in the UK, recognising the
strength of his painterly language. It was through Betty that John found Maine, taking a holiday cottage that would become his home and a teaching post at Boston where he is still Professor Emeritus. Life is the carapace of our choices and John is a rare species, a British born internationally applauded abstract painter. He is considered one of their own by both Australia and America, two countries that readily adopted him and more recently China where he is visiting teacher in art at Beijing.
John Walker has had solo exhibitions at the Museum of Modern Art in NY; The Phillips Collection in DC; The Tate Gallery, London; The Hayward Gallery in London; The Kunstverein, Hamburg; The Art Gallery of New South Wales in Sydney, Australia; and others.
His work can be found in museum collections, including The Art Institute of Chicago, Illinois; The Guggenheim Museum, New York; Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin; The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, California; Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Massachusetts; The Museum of Modern Art, New York; National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.; National Gallery of Australia, Canberra; Phillips Collection, Washington, D.C.; Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art Gallery, Edinburgh; Tate Gallery, London; Victoria and Albert Museum, London, England; Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; Yale Centre for British Art, New Haven, Connecticut.
The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia
The Art Institute of Chicago, Illinois
Arts Council England
Birmingham Museums and Art Gallery, England
The British Museum, London, England
City University of New York
Camden Library, London, England
Carnegie Library, Portsmouth, England
City Art Gallery, Leeds Museums and Galleries, England
The Cleveland Museum of Art, Ohio
Dallas Museum of Art, Texas
Durham University Museum, England
Farnsworth Art Museum, Rockland, Maine
Fogg Art Museum,
Harvard University Art Museums, Cambridge, Massachusetts
Maxine & Stuart Frankel Foundation for Art, Bloomfield Hills, Michigan
Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York
Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC
Imperial War Museum, London, England
Inside Out Museum, Beijing, China
Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin
Iziko Museums of Cape Town, South Africa
Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York
The Fred Jones, Jr. Museum of Art, University of Oklahoma, Norman
Joslyn Art Museum, Omaha, Nebraska
Kresge Art Museum, Michigan State University, East Lansing
Leicestershire Education Authority, England
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York
Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art, England
MIT-List Visual Arts Center, Cambridge, Massachusetts
Museum am Ostwall, Dortmund, Germany
Museum Neuhaus—Sammlung Liaunig, Austria
Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, Illinois
The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles,
California Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Massachusetts
The Museum of Modern Art, New York
National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC
National Gallery of Australia, Canberra
National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, Australia
Neuberger Museum of Art, Purchase College, State University of New York
The Phillips Collection, Washington, DC
Portland Museum of Art, Maine
Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art Gallery, Edinburgh
Southampton City Art Gallery, England
Tate Gallery, London, England
Try-Me Collections, Richmond, Virginia
Ulster Museum, Belfast, Northern Ireland
University of Iowa Museum of Art, Iowa City
The University of Michigan Museum of Art, Ann Arbor
Victoria and Albert Museum, London, England
Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Richmond
The Walker Art Gallery, Liverpool, England
Whitney Museum of American Art, New York
Yale Center for British Art, New Haven, Connecticut
“John Walker,” The New Yorker (March 9–April 2, 1991) page 10.
“Scanning New York,” Art Today Video Magazine, Ltd. vol. 1, no. 5 (June 1995).
“JohnWalker: Anthem (1997),” On Paper (September/October 1997) page 42.
“The Talk of the Town, Galleries—Uptown: John Walker,” The New Yorker (February 5, 2001)
“Galleries-Uptown. “John Walker, The New Yorker (March 31, 2003).
“John Walker: Expressionist in Mud,” Down East (August 2003).
“John Walker ‘Collage’,” Art Listings, The New York Times (March 11, 2005).
Against the Grain, Contemporary Art from the Edward R. Broida Collection. Pages 110-111 and 127. published by MOMA, 2006.
Book: Seal Point Series, published by Nielsen Gallery, 2007
Book: The Turner Prize and British Art. Pages 62-64. 2007. published by Tate, essay by Tom Morton.