CHARLES FORD (1941-2016)
Charles Ford was born in Dallas, Texas. He earned his bachelor of science degree in mechanical engineering from Lamar University and, for the next 15 years, worked in the field of engineering. In the early 1980s, he left for New York and had a successful career as a painter there for over nine years prior to returning to Texas.
As a photorealist painter, he strives to accurately convey the feeling of his environment through his vivid pieces. In his recent paintings of Houston, Ford captures the changing face of the “Magnolia City,” painting a wide range of subjects from iconic city landmarks, like the River Oaks Theater and the old Harold’s Department Store, to scenes typically overlooked by the hurried passer-by.
Through his meticulous attention to detail, Ford has a unique ability to single out moments and capture the character at the heart of his chosen locations. Each Texas scene exudes a true sense of place through his particular use of light, shadow, reflection, and color.
Just as in the work of Richard Estes and Chuck Close—forbearers of the American photorealist movement of the late 1960s—Ford’s paintings demonstrate the assimilation of photography into the art world. He typically works from color photographic stills to create paintings that appear to be photographs, almost mechanical in representation. Ford’s efforts result in a series of consistently elegant renditions of the Texas scene, all characterized by exceptional composition and strong elements of color and light.
Selected Biographical and Career Highlights
- 1941 Born in Dallas, Texas
- 1964 BS, Mechanical Engineering, Lamar University, Beaumont
- 1986 Included in Who’s Who in American Art–1986, Jaques Cattell Press
- 2005 Included in Davenport’s Art Reference: The Gold Edition, Ray Davenport, editor, Gordon’s Art Reference, Inc., Phoenix, Arizona
- 2005 Included in The Artist’s Bluebook: 34,000 North American Artists to March 2005, edited by Lonnie Pierson Dunbier, AskART.com Inc.
- 2016 Dies in Houston, Texas
- 1979 Dimension Houston, Juried Exhibit, Art League of Houston, Houston
- 1979 Jewish Community Center of Houston, Juried Exhibit, Houston
- 1981 New Artists at Madison Square Garden, Juried Exhibit, New York
- 1982 Solo, Kaber Gallery, New York
- 1982 The New Realists, Cote Galleries, Rockville Center, Huntington, New York
- 1983 Prizewinner, Beth-El Art Show, Juried Exhibit, West Hartford, Connecticut
- 1984 Solo, Art Expo, New York
- 1984 Solo, The Uptown Gallery, New York
- 1984 Painting New York, Museum of the City of New York
- 1985 Two-person show, Las Vegas Museum of Contemporary Art, Las Vegas
- 1985 Solo, Foxhall Gallery, Washington, DC
- 1986 Urban Visions, Uptown Gallery, New York
- 1986 Robinson Gallery, Los Angeles
- 1987 Gallery Henoch, New York
- 1988 Foxhall Gallery, Washington, D.C.
- 1988 ABC Show, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
- 1989 Love Galleries, Chicago
- 1989 Works on Paper, Queensborough Community Art Museum, New York
- 1990 New Art from New York, Juried Exhibit, traveled to Texas and California
- 1994 Recent Acquisitions, Museum of the City of New York
- 1999 Solo, Uptown Gallery, New York
- 2002 Solo, Williams Tower, Houston
- 2003 Two-person show, Harris Gallery, Houston
- 2004 city_works: Recent Paintings, Uptown Gallery, New York
- 2014 Contemporary Texas Regionalist Holiday Show, William Reaves Fine Art, Houston, TX
- 2014, Charles Ford: Texas Photorealism, William Reaves Fine Art, Houston, TX
- 2015 Painting in the Texas Tradition: Contemporary Texas Regionalism, Pearl Fincher Museum of Fine Arts, Spring
- 2015 Ties that Bind: Contemporary Texas Regionalism, Turner House, Dallas
- 2015, Texas Aesthetic IX: Contemporary Texas Regionalists, William Reaves Fine Art, Houston, TX
- 2015, Texas Visions, Contemporary Texas Regionalism, Nave Museum, Victoria, TX
- 2015 Holiday Show with the Contemporary Texas Regionalists, William Reaves Fine Art, Houston, TX
- 2016, Texas Aesthetic X: Contemporary Texas Regionalists, William Reaves | Sarah Foltz Fine Art, Houston, TX
· 2017-18, Of Texas Rivers & Texas Art touring exhibition: San Angelo Museum of Art, San Angelo, TX; Texas State Capitol, Austin, TX; Witte Museum, San Antonio, TX; and Mayborn Museum at Baylor University, Waco, TX.
· Chevron Headquarters, Midland, TX
· Hershey Foundation, Houston, TX
· Warburg Pincus, Houston, TX