Timothy Washington: Love thy neighbor
January 26, 2014 — April 27, 2014
The first solo museum exhibition of Los Angeles artist Timothy Washington examines the artist’s evolving treatment of the human form and highlights his unique and technically unorthodox use of materials. His body of work includes mixed media drypoints, towering assemblage figures, and anthropomorphized washboards and spoons. Washington’s work has been informed by the discontent and upheavals of the post-Civil Rights Era, but it is also situated in the ideologies of love and compassion derived from his spiritual upbringing. Though Washington is a well-regarded member of Los Angeles’ groundbreaking Black assemblage art movement of the 1960s and 1970s, his constant reinvention of the human form does not exclusively reference the Black experience; instead, it solidifies a collective identity that encompasses all humankind.
With his versatile background in various art disciplines such as painting, drawing, and sculpture, Washington initially gained recognition for his graphic skills when his mixed media drypoints were featured in the first contemporary exhibition of Black artists at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) in 1971. Not wanting to be known strictly as a graphic artist, he moved on to associate himself with other art practices, including a long tradition of folk art assemblage that is associated with Black heritage and spirituality. Though he cites Leonardo da Vinci, African arts, and other folk traditions as influences, Washington has always spoken with an individual voice, creating monumental work that is both personal and socially engaged.
This exhibition is partially supported by the City of Los Angeles, Department of Cultural Affairs.
Exhibition Photography: Noel Bass
Lead Image: Timothy Washington, 1A, 1972. Drypoint and auto primer on aluminum, leather saddlebag, draft card, 24 x 24 x 1.5 inches, Courtesy of the artist. Photo: Noel Bass.