Peter Alexander (American, b.1939) is a painter and sculptor best known for the resin sculptures he created in the 1960s and 1970s. He was born in Los Angeles, CA, and he studied at the University of Pennsylvania from 1957 to 1969, Architectural Association in England from 1960 to 1962, University of California at Berkeley from 1962 to 1963, University of Southern California from 1963 to 1964, and University of California at Los Angeles from 1964 to 1966, where he received both his BFA and MFA.

Alexander started as an architect, and developed a reputation in the 1960s for creating translucent resin sculptures. He is also a prolific painter who has focused on landscape views of the lights of Los Angeles, as well as murals. In addition, he enjoys fame outside of the art world, with his work appearing in movies such as Erin Brockovitch, Terminator 3, and Shopgirl. Alexander was commissioned to paint a mural for the Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles, and he was awarded a Fellowship of the National Endowment for the Arts in 1980. His work has been seen in Fogg Art Museum in Massachusetts, the Getty Museum in California, the Minneapolis Institute of Contemporary Art in Minnesota, the Museum of Contemporary Art in Hawaii, and many other museums and galleries across the United States. Some of his more famous works include Flo Line Drip, Beto, and Violet Black Edge.

Alexander’s colorful and emotion-filled paintings are in stark contrast to the resin sculptures that made him famous. Where his paintings have fluidity, the sculptures are roughly hewn and filled with sharp corners and straight lines. He employs unique colors to his resin sculptures, giving them a haunting beauty underneath the geometric patterns. He was a member of the Light and Space movement of the 1960s, which was based in California. This movement combined Op Art, Minimalism, and Geometric Abstraction. It is characterized by a focus on perceptual phenomena such as scale, volume, and light. This heavily influenced his work during the 1960s and 1970s.

Alexander currently resides in Santa Monica, CA.

Timeline

1939
Born in Los Angeles, CA
1957–1960
Attended the University of Pennsylvania
1960–1962
Architectural Association, London
1962–1963
University of California, Berkeley
1963–1964
University of Southern California, Los Angeles
1964–1966
BA and MFA, University of California, Los Angeles
Lives and works in Santa Monica, CA

Exhibitions

2014
The Color of Light, Brian Gross Fine Art, San Francisco, CA
2010
Franklin Parrasch Gallery, New York, USA
2009
Nyehaus, New York, USA
Velvets and Palms, Gallery g169, Santa Monica, USA
2008
To Dive For, Brian Gross Fine Art, San Francisco, USA
2007
Pasadena City College, College Art Gallery, Pasadena, USA
Craig Krull Gallery, Santa Monica, USA
Franklin Parrasch Gallery, New York, USA
2006
Craig Krull Gallery, Santa Monica, USA
2005
Craig Krull Gallery, Santa Monica, USA
West!: Frank Gehry and the artists of Venice Beach, 1962-1978, Frederick R. Weisman Art Museum, Minneapolis, USA
2004
Water Paintings, Brian Gross Fine Art, San Francisco, USA
2003
Craig Krull Gallery, Santa Monica, USA
2002
Brian Gross Fine Art at One Post Street, San Francisco, USA
2001
Semi Plein Air Paintings of Laguna, Peter Blake Gallery, Laguna Beach, USA
Minimalism Then and Now, UC Berkeley Art Museum, Berkeley, USA
1999
Orange County Museum of Art, Newport Beach, USA
1997
Galerie Simonne Stern, New Orleans, USA
Brian Gross Fine Art, San Francisco, USA
Galerie Simonne Stern, New Orleans, USA
Approaching the Figure, Brian Gross Fine Art, San Francisco, USA
1996
Earl McGrath Gallery, New York, USA
Paintings of the New Landscape, Peter Blake Gallery, Laguna Beach, USA
California Art from the Frederick R. Weisman Collections, Frederick R. Weisman Museum of Art, Malibu, USA
Grounded: Suburban Landscapes, Orange County Museum of Art, Newport Beach, USA
City of Vapor, Tatischeff/Rogers Gallery, Santa Monica, USA
1995
Gallery at 777, Los Angeles, USA
Peter Blake Gallery, Laguna Beach, USA
A California Collection, Hunsaker/Schlesinger Gallery, Santa Monica, USAPresence in Minimal and Postminimal Art: Selections from the Permanent Collection, Ellen Johnson Gallery, Oberlin, USA
Landscape: A Concept, Steven Oliver Art Center, Oakland, USA
Quintessential California, FACT Gallery, Laguna Beach, USA
Made in LA: The Prints of Cirrus Editions, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Los Angeles, USA
1994
75 Works, 75 Years: Collecting the Art of California, Laguna Art Museum, Laguna Beach, USA
Five Guys, Bank of America, Costa Mesa, USA
Nocturnes, Night Works, Frederick Spratt Gallery, San Jose, USA
Best of the West, Zero One Gallery, Los Angeles, USA
Shoes or No Shoes, Provincial Museum of Modern Art, Oostende, Belgium
Paper Presence, Jan Abrams Gallery, Los Angeles, USA
Brian Gross Fine Art, San Francisco, USA
Barbara Mathes Gallery, New York, USA
Craig Krull Gallery, Santa Monica, USA
1993
Sculpture and Multiples, Brooke Alexander Gallery, New York, USA
75 Works, 75 Years: Collecting the Art of California, Laguna Art Museum, Laguna Beach, USA
Abstraction in the Collection, Laguna Art Museum, Laguna Beach, USA
James Corcoran Gallery, Los Angeles, USA
1992
Individual Realities in the California Art Scene, Sezon Museum of Art & Seibu Tsukashin Hall Tokyo & Amagisaki, Japan
Laguna Art Museum, Laguna Beach, USA
Charles Whitchurch Gallery, Huntington Beach, USA
James Corcoran Gallery, Los Angeles, USA
1991
Selections from the Frederick R. Weisman Art Foundation, San Diego Museum of Art, San Diego, USA
The Works Gallery, Costa Mesa, USA
James Corcoran Gallery, Los Angeles, USA
Brian Gross Fine Art, San Francisco, USA
1990
Selections from the Frederick R. Weisman Art Foundation, Neuberger Museum, SUNY Purchase, USA
Galerie Simonne Stern, New Orleans, USA
1989
James Corcoran Gallery, Los Angeles, USA
Ed Hamilton: Master Printer, University of Arizona, Tucson, USA
Daylight Savings Time, Galeria Joan Prats, Barcelona, Spain
1988
Gallery 454 North, Los Angeles, USA
1987
James Corcoran Gallery, Los Angeles, USA
Los Angeles Today: Contemporary Visions, Amerika Haus, Berlin, Germany
Selections from the Permanent Collection, Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, USA
1986
Peter Alexander/Nicholas Wilder, James Corcoran Gallery, Los Angeles, USA
The Golden Land, San Diego Museum of Art, San Diego, USA
James Corcoran Gallery, Los Angeles, USA
1985
Spectrum: Los Angeles, Hartje Gallery, Berlin, Germany
Charles Cowles Gallery, New York, USA
James Corcoran Gallery, Los Angeles, USA
1984
Fuller Goldeen Gallery San Francisco, CA
Charles Cowles Gallery, New York, USA
van Straaten Gallery, Chicago, USA
Stephen Wirtz Gallery, San Francisco, USA
An International Survey of Painting and Sculpture, Museum of Modern Art, New York, USA
1983
ARCO Center for Visual Art Los Angeles, CA
LA Municipal Art Gallery, Los Angeles, USA
Cirrus Gallery, Los Angeles, USA
Corcoran Biennial, Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington D.C.
1982
Thomas Babeor Gallery La Jolla, CA
Cirrus Gallery, Los Angeles, USA
Echange entre Artistes, 1931-1982: Pologne-USA, Museum of Modern Art Pairs & Lodz, Poland
Charles Cowles Gallery, New York, USA
1981
University of Colorado, Boulder, USA
James Corcoran Gallery, Los Angeles, USA
1980
Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Los Angeles, USA
1978
The Weisman Collection, California State University, Long Beach, USA
1976
Painting and Sculpture in California: The Modern Art, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, San Francisco, USA
California State University, Long Beach, USA
1975
University of California, Irvine, USA
Bowers Museum, Santa Ana, USA
Comsky Gallery, Beverly Hills, USA
1974
Jack Glenn Gallery, San Diego, USA
1973
Art in Progress, Munich, Germany
Morgan Art Gallery, Kansas City, USA
The State of California Painting, Auckland City Museum, Auckland, New Zealand
1972
Documenta 72, Kassel, Germany
Jack Glenn Gallery, San Diego, USA
1971
Michael Walls Gallery, San Francisco, USA
Transparency, Reflection, Light, Space, UCLA Art Galleries, Los Angeles, USA
1970
Nicholas Wilder Gallery, Los Angeles, USA
300: New Multiple Art, Whitechapel Art Gallery, London, England
1969
New Materials and Methods, Museum of Modern Art, New York, USA
Whitney Annual, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, USA
Fourteen Sculptors: The Industrial Edge, Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, USA
Highlights: 1968-69, Larry Aldrich Museum of Contemporary Art, Ridgefield, USA
69th American Exhibition, Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, USA
Janie C. Lee Gallery, Houston, USA
Locksley/Shea Gallery, Minneapolis, USA
1968
Robert Elkon Gallery New York, NY
1967
Small Images, California State College Los Angeles