Melvin Frank Silverman Biography

Melvin Frank Silverman




Printmaker, painter, illustrator, and writer Melvin "Mel" Frank Silverman was born in Denver, Colorado on January 1, 1931, where he went to North High School. An outstanding baseball pitcher, he was offered a minor league contract with the Yankees organization which he did not take. He attended and received his B.F.A. and B.A.E. from the Art Institute of Chicago, marrying anthropologist Sydel Finfer in 1953 while still a student. Following his graduation in 1955 he was granted a fellowship by the AIC to travel to Europe for a year, where he continued his studies independently and likely created several of his cityscape woodcuts. On his return he held his first solo exhibitions at the Salpeter Gallery in New York. Subsequent exhibitions took place throughout the U.S. and in Israel. He was known as much for his illustrations for children's books as he was for his original woodcuts, paintings, and more.

Mel Silverman died from cancer at the age of 35 on September 16, 1966 in New York.

Silverman's work is included in the permanent collections of the Philadelphia Museum of Art; Washington Public Library; the University of Minnesota; the Butler Institute of American Art; the Art Institute of Chicago; the Allentown Museum, PA; the University of Indiana; the Frederick R. Weisman Art Museum, MN; Denver Public Schools Collection; and the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center, among others.

Selected exhibitions:

Art: USA, 1958, 1959; AFA, 1959-60; Phila. Pr. Club, 1958, 1959; BM, 1959; Univ. Oklahoma, 1959; Denver Mus. Art, 1954-55; Artists Gal., NY, 1956 (solo), 1963 (solo); Salpeter Gal., NY, solos: 1957, 1958, 1961, 1964; Assoc. Am. Artists, 1959 (solo); Ein Harod, Israel, 1960 (solo); Zanesville Mus. Art, 1960 (solo); Northwest Printmakers, 1962-65; Boston Printmakers, 1964, 1965; Oklahoma Printmakers, 1963-65; Wichita Print Exhib., 1965; SAGA, 1962-65; PAFA, 1965; Univ. Illinois, 1965; Butler IA, 1960 (solo), 1965; U.S. Nat. Mus., 1964; Univ. Ohio, 1963; BM, 1963, 1964; Silvermine Gld. Artists, 1963, 1964; US-Russia Exchange Exhib.