Mine Okubo (1912 - 2001)
"Men Working - The Pipe Layers"
16" x 11½"
Signed lower left circa 1930's
Provenance: Estate of John Haley
At Work-the Art of California Labor (2003) ISBN 1-890771-67-8 page 19
Mine Okubo was a UC Berkeley MFA graduate, winning a traveling scholarship to Europe in 1936. War clouds forced her to flee France and return to California. Soon after she was forced into the internment camp at Topaz, Utah. Okubo became one of the most influential teachers in the art school founded in the camp. Her art was seen by Fortune magazine and she was released early to leave for New York to work for that publication. After many years as a commercial artist, she gave up that job security to make it as a fine artist. A difficult task in the New York art business/promotional world. She told me everything is line, color and form; and that she was a colorist trying to prove the meaning of life. This lithograph shows the influence in her youthful art career as an assistant to Diego Rivera, while he painted murals for the 1939 Golden Gate Exposition on Treasure Island. She had solo shows at the San Francisco Museum of Art (1941) and the Oakland Museum (1972). Okubo has received many awards and has also had her paintings exhibited in Japan. In 1991, she was the first Asian American artist to be honored at the National Museum of Women in the Arts, in Washington, D.C.
Exhibition history available
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