The Laynor Foundation Museum

Phillip C. Curtis

Curtis is one of the last of the great hermits: St. Jerome without the lion. When he telephones long distance, the unmistakable gravely voice takes up the conversation as if it had never been broken off, absence and the passage of time are as if they had never been. The work has, equally, a timeless quality. Historians would be hard put to date a Curtis: 'anywhere between 1925 and 1970,' they would say. 'His imagination is like the desert air: pellucid, hiding nothing. The desert hates to let anything go. It preserves, where the big cities destroy; and, in the same way, a painting by Curtis preserves something once seen - or imagined. Halfway, I’d say, between the two’.

John Russell, London, 1970; catalog essay excerpt

"Farewell To The Band", 1967
oil on panel, 23" x 29"
click to enlarge

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