Richard Irving Bowman Biography

Richard Irving Bowman




Richard Irving Bowman, printmaker, painter, and teacher, was born in Rockford, Illinois on March 15, 1918. He received a scholarship to the Art Institute of Chicago School where he earned his B.F.A. in 1942. He continued his studies at the State University of Iowa and earned his M.F.A. in 1949. As recipient of the Edward L. Reyerson Traveling Fellowship in 1942, he traveled to Mexico where he made the acquaintance of Gordon Onslow-Ford.

Between 1944 and 1949, Bowman taught at the Art Institute of Chicago School, North Park College, and the State University of Iowa. In 1948, the Art Institute of Chicago included his work in the important exhibition, Abstract and Surrealist American Art. Bowman taught at Stanford University in 1949, and, in the following year, he joined the faculty of the University of Manitoba where he taught for four years. In 1954, he returned to California, settling in San Mateo County, and taught sporadically at Stanford over the next nine years. He renewed his friendship with Onslow-Ford and, in 1959, an exhibition of their work was held at the San Francisco Museum of Art.

Bowman received numerous awards, including the William R. French Memorial Gold Medal from the Art Institute of Chicago, an Honorable Mention from the Oakland Art Museum, and the Artist in Residence Grant at the Roswell Museum and Art Center. Bowman also exhibited internationally. Retrospectives of his work were held at Stanford University, Washington State University, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, Carnegie Institute, Whitney Museum of American Art, and the Roswell Museum and Art Center. Repositories of his work include the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; Oakland Museum; Stanford University; University of Texas Museum; Santa Barbara Museum; and the Museum of American Art, New Britain.

Richard Bowman died in Redwood City, California on December 10, 2001.