Born in Philadelphia, and living in New York from 1978 on, Charles Searles received his undergraduate education at the University of Pennsylvania and his art education at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, graduating with honors. He has traveled and exhibited in Europe, Africa, and the Caribbean. Searles has been on many public art panels, taught art workshops, and at Pratt Institute. Other teaching experiences include Jersey City State College, Bloomfield College, and the University of The Arts in Philadelphia, where he taught for nineteen years.
Searles was involved with sculpture, painting, and drawing. He completed seven public commissions and has fulfilled eight commission for Long Island Rail Road in New York.
"My works are primarily boldly painted wood sculptures which are free-standing or hang on a wall. I use flat planes as well as curved surfaces and, although the forms are constantly changing, some things are often used such as ovular holes in the sculpture (which, for me, suggest eyes.) The pieces have been said to convey masks, dancers, music, or rhythms. They also have a strong cultural identity that has been called African, Asian, Native American, Caribbean, and more. Therefore, I entitled the four sculptures at the Dempsey Center Cultural Harmony." -- Searles, 1990
Searles is represented in many museum and corporate collections, including the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Montclair Museum of Art, New Jersey; Dallas Museum of Art; National Museum of American Art, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC; Afro-American Historical and Cultural Museum, Philadelphia; Howard University, Washington, DC; ARCO Chemical, AT&T and First Pennsylvania Bank.
Charles Searles died in 2004.
Additional information courtesy of Lawrence Ditizio