Victory, Acrylic solution, 33" x 35"

Born in the South, Burford came to Iowa to study with Grant Wood before World War II, then left to serve in the U.S. Air Force, and later returned to take his M.F.A. in Iowa City, where he settled down to capture his semi-remembered, semi-imagined world through paintings and prints and to teach decade after decade of grateful students.

Lists of Burford’s honors and awards fill many pages and exhibition catalogs. Iowa is lucky to claim him. However, the magic of Byron Burford, like that of his Italian counter-part, belongs not only to the state, or our country, but to the entire western world.

If America holds a living counter-part of Frederico Fellini, it is Iowa’s venerable visual artist Byron Burford. Both larger-than-life creators, ebullient bon vivants, observers of the human condition, and both deeply fascinated with the worlds of circuses, legendary entertainers, and jazz, these giant talents both captured the innocence, lyricism, gaudy diversity, and pathos of their generations before and after World War II.

This page was first displayed
on November 30, 2005

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