You are here

Charles Griffin Farr Collection at UCSC

About the Charles Griffin Farr Collection
Did you know that the Sesnon Gallery houses the Charles Griffin Farr collection? The collection consists of over 500 drawings and oil paintings and functions both as an exhibiting collection as well as a teaching collection in our gallery internship, training students skills such as museum registration and data entry.

Virtual exhibition of selected Farr works in Sesnon Gallery Model created by Geopogo 
Navigate the gallery using the four arrows of your keyboard for directional navigation, and the touchpad to look around and up and down. Video clip in the back room is activated by moving towards the screen.

Browse more works by Charles Griffin Farr through our Sesnon Gallery Collection via Catalogit HUB

About the artist
Self-portrait photograph of Charles Griffin Farr
Charles Griffin Farr was born in 1908 in Birmingham, Alabama.  He studied in New York City and at the Academie Americaine in Paris, France. He died in San Francisco in 1997.

Mr. Farr gifted many paintings and drawings to the University Collection, some of which are currently on display at University Center, representing the full spectrum of his artistic career.

As a young artist in the late 1930s, Charles Griffin Farr took part in the Works Progress Administration programs (WPA) and trained as a restorer of ancient pottery at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.  Farr took a special interest in the Met’s American painting tradition.  Through his study of American artists like Peale, Kensett, and Eakins, Farr became convinced of a unifying character more theoretical than stylistic of an American tradition of realism. He moved to San Francisco after WWII and lived and worked on Potrero Hill.

Charles Griffin Farr was a painter in the American Realist tradition whose oeuvre has not been affected by fad or current, but through a stoic personal sojourn has created an individual painting style which assimilated his appreciation of the past with a sophisticated understanding of modernist theory and aesthetic.  His influences range from classical Renaissance through 17th century Dutch painting to contemporary issues and ideas of visual perception.  His perception is predicated in careful observation, precise representation and highly-structured compositions, the result of which are masterful, magical, realist paintings endowing the artist’s subjects with a mysterious, supernatural quality that seems to suspend time and space.

Charles Griffin Farr was represented by the Hackett Freedman Gallery in San Francisco until it closed in 2009.                             

The current display of Charles Griffin Farr’s work and the conjoined label copy within the University Center were updated by History of Art and Visual Culture students. 

Charles Griffin Farr Exhibitions at the Sesnon Gallery and Sesnon Underground

2020
Works by Charles Griffin Farr
Curated by Ava Kristy
Feb 19–29, 2020

2017
Underground Figurative Show
Curated works by Natalie Ortiz in conversation with UC Santa Cruz student exhibition
Unique works of ink on paper, charcoal, and graphite figures from 1930s – 1980s.
April 5–21, 2017

2016
Charles Griffin Farr Screening and Drawing Room

Curated by Carrie Hoffman

2013
Charles Griffin Farr: Formal Complexity
curated by Shelby Graham and UCSC students
September 19 - October 19, 2013 

2011
Suspended in Time: Charles Griffin Farr

2010
Reimagining American Realism: Works by Charles Griffin Farr

2009
Charles Griffin Farr Summer 2009

2008
Charles Griffin Farr Summer 2008

For more information about the collection please contact us
sesnon@ucsc.edu

 

-----

Support the Sesnon Gallery today! 
Your gifts sustain our student internships and exhibition programming.