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Joë Downing

Born in: 1925

United States

Biography
Translation in progress

Joe Downing is a Franco-American painter born on November 15, 1925 in Tompkinsville, Kentucky. He died on December 29, 2007 in Menerbes, Vaucluse, France. He came for the first time in Europe as a soldier during WWII. He studied at the Chigago Art Institute. He settled in France in 1950. He shared his time between Paris and Ménerbes until his death. Joe Downing was one of the artists promoted by the wellknown Jean-Robert Arnaud gallery in Saint Germain des Prés, Paris. Over the years Joe Downing sets up an amazing puzzle on his canvases in which pleasure the colourist artist expresses himself without any restraint. Attracted by unusual supports, he painted on old doors, windows, tiles and leather. In 1952, for the ‘Compagnie Lyrique de Paris’, he created the decors of Au fond de la Vallée, an opera by Kurt Weill. In 1965, for the Compagnie Jean-Louis Barrault-Madeleine Renaud, he created the decors for a play by Marguerite Duras, ‘Whole Days in the Trees’, performed at the Odeon theater. In 1967, a first retrospective of his work is shown at the Brest Museum (France). In 1976, he worked in collaboration with the Manufacture National de Sèvres and created porcelain plates. In 1982, a new retrospective show was presented at the Owensboro Museum of Fine Arts in Kentucky. In 1987, a retrospective is organized at the Museum of Art and History of Metz. In 1994, the’ Atrium Joe Downing’ was inaugurated at the Owensboro Museum of Fine Arts. In 1996, the Pavillon des Portes was inaugurated at the Baker Arboretum in Bowling Green (Kentucky).
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