Joseph McGurl Works

Joseph McGurl

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Cataumet, MA

As a realist, I work in a sphere which must function on several different levels simultaneously. Although I have a deep personal connection to the landscape, it is also a vehicle to explore my interest in modern physics, spirituality, and the exploration of light, form, space, and color interpreted with paint. The slice of reality that man is capable of experiencing and the higher reality that permeates time and space is my true subject. However, the ideal location to explore my subject is also important, and many of my paintings are derived from painting trips to the American west and the seacoast. The west has a similar appeal to me as does the ocean. As well as being places where I can have a clear view of the sky and light shining upon the earth, they both have a sense of endless space, openness, and freedom. At the ocean, I feel as though I could sail off to the ends of the world, and in the west, I could jump on a horse and “ride off into the sunset.” While painting the western landscape, I experience an incredible sense of optimism as I gazed upon the expansive landscape.

In order to gain a deeper understanding of my subject, I devote a significant portion of my painting time to plein air work. Although my studio paintings are often imaginary, they are informed by thousands of plein air studies which lend emotional and empirical truth to the scenes depicted. Because of my love for the forms of nature and in an attempt to arrive at a more universal and timeless portrayal of reality, a high fidelity to visual truths rather than stylistic interpretations predominate in my art making.



Massahusette College of Art, BFA dual major painting and education 1980; University of London, 1978; Boston University summer program in Florence, Italy, 1979; Fenway Studios, Robert Cormier Sight- size figure drawing 1986- 1987


Awards and Honors:

Living Master, Art Renewal Center

Elected member, Plein Air Painters of America

Elected Member, Guild of Boston Artists

Elected Fellow, American Society of Marine Artists

Copley Master, Copley Society of Boston

Elected member, Saint Botolph Club

Elected member, Salmagundi Club of New York

2020 and 2018 Coors Western Art Show; Patron’s Choice Award

2018 Art Renewal Center International Fine Art Salon; First Place in Landscape, Plein Air Magazine Award, Second Place in Plein Air Painting

2017 Guild of Boston Artists; Frank Benson Award

2016 FASO Boldbrush; Best in Show Award

2015 Art Renewal Center International Fine Art Salon; American Fine Art Magazine Award of Excellence, and the Rehs Award

2014 America Masters at the Salmagundi Club, New York; Best Display of a Group of Artworks

2014 Art Renewal Center International Fine Art Salon; First Place Landscape, Purchase Award, and Plein Air Magazine Award

2009 Guild of Boston Artists; Alden Bryan Award for Excellence in Landscape

2006 Laguna Plein Air Painters Association; Best in Show Award and Patrons’ Choice Award

1993 Guild of Boston Artists; Grumbacher Gold Medallion Award for Artistic Excellence

1990 Copley Society of Boston, John Singleton Copley Award for Artistic Achievement


Selected Publications:

Plein Air Magazine, August 2021

Western Art and Architecture April 2020

Representational Art Conference Magazine—2019

Fine Art Connoisseur—2013, 2008, 2006

Plein Air Magazine—2013, 2011, 2018

Underpaintings Magazine—2017

Art of the West—2014

The Outdoor Painter, McGurl on Past Masters 2015

The Outdoor Painter—2013

American Artist—2009, 2005, 2007, 2002, 1999, 1998

American Artist Workshop—2007

American Art Collector—2020, 2013, 2010, 2009, 2006,

Sea History—2000

Art Ideas: American Renaissance for the Twenty First Century—1998

Boston Globe—1991

Cape Cod View—2006

The Review—1989


Selected Museum Exhibitions:

-Museu Europeu d’Art Modern, Barcelona, Spain, Sotheby’s Los Angeles—Art Renewal Center International Salon 2015, 2018

-New Britain Museum of American Art, CT—Hamm Collection 2015

-Eiteljorg Museum, Indianapolis, IN—Quest for the West annually 2014- 2020

-The Tweed Museum of Art, Duluth, MN, Plein Air Painters of America, 2018

-Steamboat Art Museum, Steamboat Springs, CO Plein Air Painters of America, 2017

-Coors Western Art Show Denver, CO 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021

-California Center for the Arts Escondido, CA- Legacy of the Land, 2015

-Cape Cod Museum of Art—Plein Air Painters of America 2015

Evolutionary Realism: Landscapes by Joseph McGurl 1997

-St. Botolph Club of Boston—Joseph McGurl Solo Show 2015

Joseph McGurl Retrospective: Paintings from the Past Decade 1999

-Salmagundi Club of NY—American Masters annually 2010- 2019

-The Cahoon Museum of American Art, MA—A Sense of Place: Location Studies

By Joseph McGurl 2004

-Vose Galleries, Boston, MA—Realism Now 2004

-Mount Holyoke College Art Museum, MA—Changing Prospects: The View from

Mount Holyoke 2002

-Arnot Art Museum, NY—Representing Representation V 2002

-Rockwell Museum of Western Art, NY—Representing Representation West 2002

-Haggin Museum, CA—Contemporary Artists Paint Yosemite and the

Eastern Sierra 2001

-Haggin Museum, California Art Club Invitational Show 2001

-Haggin Museum, Sea to Shining Sea: A Reflection of America 2004 to 2007

-Forbes Gallery, NY—Sovenir de Normandie 1998

-Newport Art Museum, RI—Lost Landscapes 1991

-Fitchburg Art Museum, MA—Copley Masters 1991

New England Realist Artists 1989


Solo and Small Group Gallery Shows :

Cavalier Galleries, NY, NY solo show— 2020

Salmagindi Club, NY, NY -2018

Rehs Galleries NY, NY 2017

Hammer Galleries, NY, NY solo shows—2008, 2006, 2005, 2002

Collins Galleries, Orleans, MA solo show 2016

John Pence Gallery, San Francisco—2013 solo show, 2005, 2002, 2000

The Guild of Boston Artists- solo show 2011

Tree’s Place Gallery, Orleans, MA—2010, 2005, 2002, 2000, 1998, 1995, 1990, 1989

Hollis Taggart Galleries, NY, NY, and Washington, DC—1997 solo show, 1996, 1995


Selected Collections:

Forbes Collection, New York, NY

New Britain Museum of American Art, New Britain, CT

Cahoon Museum of American Art, Cotuit, MA

Art Renewal Center, New York, NY

Cape Cod Museum of Art, Dennis, MA

Westmoreland Museum of American Art, Greenburg, PA

Tweed Museum of Art, University of Minnesota, Duluth, MN

Christopher Forbes

Sen. John F. Kerry

Richard Mellon Scaife

David Croll



Cavalier Galleries, New York, NY

Collins Galleries, Orleans MA

Principle Gallery, Alexandria, VA

Palm Avenue Fine Art, Sarasota, FL

Joseph McGurl Studio Gallery, Cataumet, MA