James Asher is active/lives in New Mexico, Missouri. James Asher is known for landscape and western genre painting, sculpture, lithography.
Biography from the Archives of askART
Biography from American Design Ltd.
Born: 1944 Butler, Missouri / Currently living in Scottsdale, AZ
Asher is a realistic, representational sculptor, painter, and
printmaker of the present Indian cultures of Arizona and New
Mexico. He creates romanticized versions of "his" west. In
oil painting, he adds glazes to certain features because of the
brilliance they add to the color and the look of true sunlight.
grew up in farm country, and studied art from an early age. He
earned a science degree with a major in art from Central Missouri
University, and also went to the Art Center School in Los Angeles.
Contemporary Western Artists by Harold and Peggy Samuels
A native of Butler, Missouri, James Asher received his Bachelor of Fine
Arts degree from the Art Center School in Los Angeles. He went on
to work as the art director for a variety of large advertising firms in
the Los Angeles area, and before moving to Arizona in 1972, was a
principal in Cochrane Chase and Company. There he received
several Printing Industry of America awards for excellence given by the
printing industry itself. He is accomplished in both oil and
watercolor techniques as well as sculpture and is recognized as a
leader in stone lithography.
Biography from Southwest Graphics Collection
Since 1974, Asher has devoted his
time to fine art in his Scottsdale studio. Considering himself a
southwestern "Regionalist", he travels throughout the Southwest
photographing Indians and the magnificent landscape of Arizona for his
inspiration. He draws on his own intimate experiences among the
so-called primitive peoples - Hopis in the cornfield such as Mexicans
who wash their clothes in the Rio Cuale and the Zuni women of New
Mexico who build bee-hive ovens for baking bread.
"I paint the 'Now West', rather than romanticizing the west of the
past", says Asher. "We're living in a time period that will be history
later on. I'm just trying to record it as I see it now." He adds,
"I could work here for the rest of my life and never run out of
subjects to paint."
Asher works slowly, giving great attention
to detail like the European masters of old, no matter what medium he
uses. He says, "I work with watercolor only after I've done all
the conceptual sketching, arranging, and composing beforehand. Yet, I
wouldn't have gotten to that point if I had not observed, firsthand,
everything I could possibly observe about Zuni Indian oven makers, for
instance. After all that, the mere physical act of committing it
to paper, canvas, or bronze becomes an exercise. By then, I know
exactly what I'm going to do. Almost like rote, like
Asher's work can be seen in such places as the
Valley National Bank, the Xerox Corporation, the Curtis Corporation,
and the Southwest Forest Industries. Since 1979, his work has
been in many group and one-man exhibitions throughout the southwest.
His work also appears in a book by Peggy & Harold Samuels entitled Contemporary Western Artists.
Asher currently lives and works in the Phoenix-Scottsdale area.
James Asher is a regionalist artist with a mission. Working in a classical representational style, he depicts the history we are living through now as well as preserving the Indian culture and landscape of the Southwest. An unabashed regionalist, Asher has travelled extensively throughout the Southwest, photographing, sketching and painting as though he could work in the region for the rest of his life and not run out of subjects.
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Born in Missouri in 1944, Asher received a Bachelor of Science Degree from Central Missouri University in 1966. He earned his Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree from the Art Center College of Design in Los Angeles where he was taught to paint by Joe Henninger. Since that time, Asher had a brief, successful tour in the advertising business in Los Angeles, and in 1974 came to Scottsdale Arizona to do what he had desired most--paint the Southwest.
He is a watercolorist, oil painter, and sculptor. Working in collaboration with the staff of Tamarind Master Printers at Southwest Graphics, Asher has become one of the most prolific practitioners of the original lithograph.
Mr. Asher's work can be found in many public and private collections including the office of the Governor of Arizona.
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