ACA Galleries is presenting the exhibition “Ralph Fasanella: Artist of the People,” which commemorates the tenth anniversary of the artist’s death. The exhibition runs through February 3.
On January 10 at 6:30 pm there will be a talk at American Folk Art Museum, 45 West 53rd Street, with Lee Kogan, curator of special exhibitions. On January 27, at 4 pm, a talk at ACA Galleries with Paul D’Ambrosio, vice president and chief curator, Fenimore Art Museum, will be presented.
Fasanella’s works portray the lives of the people and places he observed while growing up in New York City. The intricately detailed works depict childhood memories of selling ice with his father, playing stickball and later while working as a union organizer and laborer. He recorded and critiqued many of the major political and social events of the Twentieth Century, such as the assassination of John F. Kennedy and the detonation of the first atomic bomb.
It was not until 1945, at the age of 31 and without any formal artistic training, he began to paint. At that time he was a union organizer for the United Electrical Workers of the CIO.
In 1947, he had his first solo exhibition at ACA Galleries. International recognition followed decades later. On October 30, 1972, he was the subject of a featured cover story in New York Magazine. In 1973, Alfred A. Knopf, Inc published Fasanella’s City, a monograph, by Patrick Watson. Ralph Fasanella’s America by Paul D’Ambrosio was published in 2001 for the traveling exhibition organized by the Fenimore Art Museum in Cooperstown, N.Y.
Fasanella’s work can be found in the Addison Gallery of American Art, Andover, Mass.; National Baseball Hall of Frame and Museum, Cooperstown, N.Y.; Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington, D.C.; The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York City; Milwaukee (Wis.) Museum of Art; American Folk Art Museum, New York City, as well as numerous other museums, public buildings and private collections.
ACA Galleries is at 529 West 20th Street, fifth floor. For information, 212-206-8080 or www.acagalleries.com.