Reginald H. Neal Biography

Reginald H. Neal





Reginald H. Neal, painter, printmaker and teacher, was born in Leicester, England on 20 May 1909. His family immigrated to the United States in 1910, and moved to Decatur, Illinois. Neal studied at Yale University between 1929 and 1930 and Bradley Polytechnic Institute (now Bradley University) in Peoria, Illinois, where he earned his B.A. In 1939, he received his Master's degree in art history from University of Chicago.

Neal studied with Pleasant Ray McIntosh and Grant Wood. Best known as a printmaker, his work from the 1940s reflected the realistic, regional compositions of his teachers. Neal’s work in the 1950s and1960s moved toward abstraction, especially the new Optical Art. His early Op Art works explored optical elements that produced vibrating, flickering and pulsating effects. His work was included in The Responsive Eye, (Museum of Modern Art, New York, 1965) and Optic Nerve: Perceptual Art of the 1960s (Columbus Museum of Art, Ohio, 2007).

Neal exhibited at the Art Institute of Chicago in 1935; the Oakland Art Gallery in 1936; the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts in 1936, 1938, and 1940; the Artists for Victory exhibition at the Metropolitan Museum in 1942; the Decatur Art Center, 1943 and 1945; and the Kearney Memorial Regional Exhibition in Milwaukee, 1946. Neal taught at the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center, the University of Mississippi Escuela de Bellas Artes in Mexico, and the Contemporaries Graphic Center in New York.

Reginal H. Neal is represented in the collections of the Art Institute of Chicago, Illinois; the Figge Art Museum, Davenport, Iowa; the Kirkland Museum of Fine & Decorative Art, Denver, Colorado; Weatherspoon Art Museum, University of North Carolina, Greensboro; the Grunwald Center for the Graphic Arts, Hammer Museum, University of California, Los Angeles and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art; the Memphis Brooks Museum of Art, Tennessee; the Museum of Modern Art, New York; the Princeton University, New Jersey; the Brigham Young University Museum of Art, Provo, Utah; and the Library of Congress and the National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.

The New Jersey State Museum mounted a retrospective of his work in 1989 and before that a retrospective of his prints was featured at the Zimmerli Museum at Rutgers University in 1986.Reginald H. Neal died in Alachua, Florida on February 29, 1992.