Leon Golub (Leon Golub)

Leon Golub

Artist who depicted war, torture and oppression in large-scale figurative paintings symbolizing the destructive nature of human ambition. Born in Chicago, Illinois, he earned a graduate degree from the Art Institute of Chicago in 1950; lived in Paris and then moved to New York in the 1960s. Taught at the School of Visual Arts in Manhattan and at Rutgers University in New Jersey. Golub drew upon material ranging from Greek sculpture to mass media photography and developed a technique of scraping the first layer of paint from a canvas, leaving a blistered surface. His works are in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Modern Art and the Tate Gallery in London. Later pieces include 30 portraits based on photos of powerful public figures including President Nixon and Cuban leader Fidel Castro. He also focused on images of torture and violence with his “Interrogation” and “Mercenaries” series and reflected his anti-Vietnam views with the series “Assassins.” Died of complications after surgery in New York City. (bio by: Fred Beisser)


  • January, 23, 1922


  • August, 08, 2004


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