Cleveland-born and educated, Gary Bukovnik has lived in San Francisco for over 40 years. Using watercolor, monotype, and lithograph, Gary is known for melding sensual visual vitality with a vibrant sense of color to create floral images of astonishing depth and intensity.
The many honors Gary has received include two Visiting Artist invitations from the American Academy, Rome (2003, 2005). In 2001, Lincoln Center invited him to create a poster for their prestigious List Commemorative Program Collection; (past contributors have included Roy Lichtenstein, Andy Warhol, Robert Motherwell, Helen Frankenthaler, Alex Katz, Elizabeth Murray, and Donald Sultan).
Solo exhibitions of Gary’s work include shows at Caldwell Snyder Galleries (San Francisco and St. Helena, CA); the Trajan Gallery (Carmel, CA); the Campton Gallery (NYC); the Concept Gallery (Pittsburgh); the Elins Eagles-Smith (San Francisco); the Bonfoey Gallery (Cleveland); the American Conservatory Theater Gallery (San Francisco); and the Erickson Fine Art Gallery (Healdsburg).
Recent exhibitions in which Gary’s work has appeared have been organized by the Butler Institute of American Art (Youngstown, OH); the Paula Brown Gallery (Toledo, OH); the Neuhoff Gallery (New York); the Lisa Kurts Gallery (Memphis); the Irving Galleries (Palm Beach); Galerie Kutter (Luxembourg); the Southern Alleghenies Museum of Art (Johnstown, PA); the Chin Show Cultural Center (Taipei); Takashimaya (Tokyo); the Hunt Institute for Botanical Documentation (Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh); and the Brevard Museum of Art (Melbourne, FL).
Among the works displayed at the Brevard Museum was a tapestry based on one of Gary’s watercolors. It was hand-woven in Aubusson, France, at Atelier Raymond Picaud, weavers since the Seventeenth Century, and at the forefront of progressive tapestry since the 1930s; (previous such tapestries have been based on images by Alexander Calder, Georges Braque, and Helen Frankenthaler.)
Gary’s watercolors and monotypes were presented in Flowers: Gary Bukovnik Watercolors & Monotypes (Harry N. Abrams, 1990). Featuring a foreword by James J. White (curator of Hunt Institute for Botanical Documentation), the book also contained a transcript of an interview conducted by Robert Flynn Johnson (curator, Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco); and a Judith Gordon essay about Gary and depiction of flowers in art.
Another book, Gary Bukovnik Watercolors (Hudson Hills Press, 2005), contains more than 70 plates and has a foreword by Louis A. Zona (Director, Butler Institute of American Art); an introduction by Carter E. Foster (Curator of Drawings, Whitney Museum); and a transcript of an interview conducted by Clare Henry (art critic, Financial Times).
Gary’s work is represented in diverse public and private collections including: the Brooklyn Museum; the Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York); the Museum of Modern Art (New York); the Chicago Museum of Art; the Smithsonian Institution (Washington, D.C.); the Butler Institute of American Art (Youngstown, OH); the Fine Arts Museums (San Francisco); the Bank of America, AT&T, and Neiman Marcus corporate collections; and the Westin Bonaventure Hotel, Los Angeles.
Community and civic organizations to which Gary often donates art include the San Francisco Symphony (which, since 1982, has commissioned an annual poster from him announcing its fall season); the New York Metropolitan Opera; Refugees International, Japan; Project Open Hand, San Francisco; and Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, NYC.
Gary has exhibited widely in Japan, Taiwan, and China. Most recently he has been featured at the Shanghai Hongqiao Contemporary Art Museum; the Today Art Museum (Beijing); the Xiamen Museum of Art; the Tianjin Museum of Art; and the Suzhou Art Academy Museum.