News and Events
October 06th, 2016 Yeshiva University Museum Receives Book of Job Mural
Hugh Mesibov's Book of Job Mural
Now on Exhibit
September 28, 2016 - January 15, 2017
Popper Gallery, Yeshiva University Museum

A reception is planned for October 26th, 2016 from 6 pm - 8 pm in the Popper Gallery at the Yeshiva University Museum.

In 1969, Temple Beth El in Spring Valley commissioned a huge mural illustrating the Biblical account of the suffering and redemption of Job. The Rabbi at the time, Rabbi Frishman, felt that it was important Mesibov use figurative rather than more contemporary forms such as abstract or expressionist art to tell this story. Funding was provided by congregants Jeanne and Warren Levin. The mural was completed in 1972.

Temple Beth El merged with Temple Beth Torah of Upper Nyack in 2016. Temple Beth El was slated to be demolished, and the congregation reached out to YU Museum to provide a home for its mural.

Yeshiva University Museum is located in the Center for Jewish History, one block west of Union Square.
15 West 16th Street, New York, NY 10011, Between 5th and 6th Avenues.

March 25th, 2016 Hugh Mesibov passes away at the age of 99
Hugh Mesibov, 1916 2016
20th Century American Abstract Expressionist

Hugh Mesibov was a 20th century American artist whose iconic work displays key elements of the New York experience including Surrealist, Abstract Expressionist and figurative works across multiple media. A recipient of national and international acclaim, Mesibov is included in America’s great collections of contemporary art including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Barnes foundation, and the Whitney Museum of Art. A veteran of over 30 oneman shows, Mesibov had exhibited widely his works in watercolor, oil, and acrylic as well as etchings, lithographs and monoprints.

Born in Philadelphia, Mesibov first studied at the Fleisher Memorial Art School, then at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts and the Barnes Foundation. During the 1930’s he worked with funding from the Works Progress Administration producing paintings, murals and prints depicting Depression Era themes of working life and social commentary. During this period his experimental work in printmaking led to his coinvention (with Michael Gallagher and Dox Thrash) of the Carborundum Print process with which he made the first prototype, “Mystic”. This invention of the Color Carborundum Print brought him national recognition.

Mesibov also began to develop his talent for mural painting. The U.S. Treasury Section of Fine Arts commissioned his work “The Steel Industry” which hangs to this day in a post office in Hubbard, Ohio.

Mesibov’s work from the late 1930s explores social issues of the day, drawn in a lively and bold style reflecting the modernist works from the Barnes Collection. Yet, early on, his horror of war and destruction surfaced in the 1937 work, “Bombing of Nanking”. ( This work was recently recognized and exhibited in May of 2015 during a publishing presentation of a book about the Japanese invasion of China at the Javits Center, NYC. The event was covered by CCTV and Xinhua, China news services.)

In 1940 he had his first one manshow at the Carlin Gallery, Philadelphia. At this time his work became increasingly abstract, initially formal and angular, then eventually surreal. During World War II, while employed at a shipyard, his work echoed the rigors of both shipyard and war. In particular, the painting “The Siege”, 1943, refers to Leningrad, in a bizarre and horrific dreamlike cityscape. This work currently resides in the collection of a private collector.

Mesibov moved to New York City in 1945 and began an intensely productive phase of his career. His first New York oneman show was at The Chinese Gallery, 1947, where Milton Avery, Nell Blaine, and Ralph Rosenborg also exhibited. There Mesibov’s work became more abstract, but also more painterly and dynamic. As part of the Formations Group, he exhibited at The New School in 1948 and 1949, with friends John Ferron and Boris Margo. Mesibov was a member of “The Club” when the abstract expressionists converged into a school; he associated with Franz Kline and Ibram Lassaw in particular, rubbing shoulders with Jackson Pollock, Willem de Kooning, Philip Guston, Adolph Gottlieb, Robert Motherwell, Barnett Newman, Ad Reinhardt, and Mark Rothko. Mesibov had shows at the Morris Gallery, 1955, and Gallery Mayer, 1959. In 1956 and 1958 he exhibited at the Artists Gallery, with his friend Richard PousetteDart.

During all this time Mesibov remained loyal to the landscape. Summer visits to Aspen, Colorado, from 1951 to 1954, resulted in a body of work, mostly watercolors, characterized by a perception of space drawn from the vast American West. These views reveal extreme control of the medium and a continued exploration of abstraction. Visits to Monhegan Island, Maine, in 1956 and 1958 elicited an intensified expressionism. The heightened energy of the Atlantic surf translated into aggressive brush strokes and dramatic color on canvas.

During the 60’s Mesibov found himself inspired by literature. “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner” by Coleridge and Cervantes’s “Don Quixote” each produced a series of more than thirty works. During this time, Mesibov produced some of his largest works on canvas. Working in his preferred canvas medium, acrylic, he painted on canvases stretched sometimes to 8’ x 10’. In 1972, Mesibov produced a mural for the Temple Beth El in Spring Valley, New York, that consisted of three large joined canvases measuring 8’ x 15’ each. The mural theme, based on the biblical Book of Job, depicts Job’s challenge to God and ultimately his suffering and redemption.

Mesibov returned to watercolor during the 80’s. Inspired by the pond he built outside his studio window, he produced a large body of work based on a lifetime of experience to express winter, summer and pastoral scenes in his “Pond” and “Sunroom” series.

During the 1990’s, Mesibov was occupied with developing new techniques in printmaking. The medium of monoprint, which allows a single print to be taken from a prepared plate, provided a rich area of technical as well as creative challenge. Experimenting with pigment, paper and adhesive, Mesibov again pioneered techniques in this increasingly popular medium.

In addition to his life as a painter, Mesibov was an inspiration to many students, joining the faculty of the State University of New York, at Rockland in the early 1960’s; retiring in 1989 and becoming Professor Emeritus in 1993. He carved out a significant role in the artistic community of Rockland County. He was the recipient of the Executive Arts Award for Visual Arts, Rockland Council on the Arts, 1988, and a New York State Council on the Arts Grant, 1995/96. He had a major retrospective at the Rockland Center of the Arts, 1997.

Mesibov had more than twenty other oneperson shows. Among them, the exhibition, "THE WARTIME SHIPYARD Surrealist Works of 1942/45, Paintings and Works on Paper", May, 2010, at the Susan Teller Gallery, which followed Hugh Mesibov, A Ninetieth Birthday Exhibition, 2006, and Hugh Mesibov: Recent Monotypes and Watercolor, March, 2002. Also, his work was included in the Susan Teller Gallery: Industrial Realism, 1997, American Mural Studies, 1935 to 1962, 2004, and Under the Influence, American Artists Look at Picasso, 2006. A print by Mesibov was included in The American Scene, The British Museum, London, 2009.

Work by Hugh Mesibov is in the permanent collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York University, and Syracuse University, NY; the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, the Free Library of Philadelphia, the Barnes Foundation, Merion Station, and the Carnegie Library, Pittsburgh, PA; the Worcester Museum of Art, Massachusetts; the Library of Congress, Washington, DC; the Art Institute of Chicago and the Mary and Leigh Block Museum of Art, Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois; the Wolfsonian/Florida International University, Miami Beach; the Museum of Art, the University of Oregon, Eugene; the Newark Museum, New Jersey; the Baltimore Museum of Art, Maryland; and the British Museum, London.

Hugh Mesibov died peacefully in his sleep at home in the early morning of March 24th. His life was full of family and friends, students and colleagues, all who loved and respected him as an artist and a man. He is survived by his beloved wife of 67 years, Eudice Charney, children Christopher, Paul, and Deborah, six grandchildren; Alex, Rachael, Jared, Jamie, Nicholas and Sarah. All of his family loved him deeply and miss him already. He was a fun and funny guy who never strayed from a dinner table full of silly jokes and groanworthy puns, a dad who loved to play with his kids yet could be a stern facilitator of truth and practicality. Though art was his life force, Eudice was his muse and that devotion flowed throughout their lives till his last breath.

January 18th, 2016 Hugh Mesibov opens Chinese Language gallery website
Hugh Mesibov online presence is now extended to a Chinese language website. Through this website Mandarin readers will have access to Mesibov's art activities going on in the Chengdu China, Sichuan province and surrounding areas. For more information please click here.

May 27th, 2015 Hugh Mesibov's "Bombing of Nanking" appeared at BookExpo America (BEA) , CCTV, XinHua
Mesibov's work "The Bombing of Nanking" appeared in the exhibition for the Donation Ceremony in Javits Center NYC of Japanese Invasion of China in Pictures—Key Book of Shandong Publishing Group Co., Ltd. The event was covered by CCTV and Xinhua, China news services. http://news.cntv.cn/2015/05/31/VIDE1433034112352643.shtml

May 01st, 2015 Hugh Mesibov's Works from WW2 appearing at the Javits Center BookExpo America (BEA)
On May 27th, Mesibov's work "The Bombing of Nanking" will appear in the exhibition for the Donation Ceremony in USA of Japanese Invasion of China in Pictures—Key Book of Shandong Publishing Group Co., Ltd.
At The Jacob K. Javits Convention Center, Wed. May 27| 10:00 AM - 10:30 AM | Room 1E02

April 03rd, 2015 Hugh Mesibov works on paper appearing at international art exhibit in Chengdu China
On April 28th, the Awareness 2015 International Exhibition of International Artists will open at the U37 Creative Warehouse in Chengdu China. Included will be Mesibov's works on paper from the 1950s through the 1990s.

March 20th, 2015 Hugh Mesibov announces new website hosting his works.
Hugh Mesibov, 20th century American artist is celebrating the opening of his new website (hughmesibov.com). Celebrating over 75 years of his abstract expressionist works, this site provides an in-depth look into his style and his process. Hugh Mesibov, born in 1916, is one the the few if not the only still living WPA artists.