Edward R. Beardsley
United States, 1938 - 2017
Title: Calypso & Odysseus
Credit Line: Gift of Felicia Beardsley
Accession Number: 2013.11.1
Label Text:Beardsley, now living in the mountain hamlet, Wrightwood, was the founding director of the UCR/California Museum of Photography in 1973. While Ed has always been a painter, he understood the importance of establishing a major photography institution and he reached out to such photographers as Joe Deal and such interdisciplinary artists as James Turrell to help initiate the California Museum of Photography. At University of California, Riverside, he both taught as a member of the Studio Art faculty and was Dean of the Division of Fine Arts in the College of Humanities. In the 60s and 70s, Beardsley was also associated with the Southern California vanguard music scene. A close friend of Frank Zappa, one of Beardsley's paintings was used as the debut album cover by Alice Cooper, a band that Zappa had signed with his Reprise Records label in 1968. "Beardsley's works," David Flaten has written, "are informed by a rich tradition of European painting, that would include the political and satirical work of George Grosz, the dark side of Hieronymus Bosch and Egon Schiele, and the playfulness of a tradition labeled by the Nazis as 'degenerate art.'”
This work was included in an exhibition at Sweeney Art Gallery, Ecce Homo: The Paintings of Edward Beardsley, which was on view from October 20 to December 14, 2012. This exhibition featured Beardsley's recent paintings from the Ecce Homo series and from the extended project of drawings, Monsieur Souris.