Discipline: Visual Art – painting, Visual Art – printmaking

Russell T. Gordon

Discipline: Visual Art – painting, Visual Art – printmaking
Region: Montreal, CANADA
MacDowell fellowships: 1975

Russell T. Gordon (1936-2013) was an American painter and printmaker. He moved to Montreal in 1973 where he was a visiting professor then faculty member at Concordia University until he retired in 1998. Gordon was born in Philadelphia and received a B.F.A. from Temple University in 1962, an M.S. from the University of Wisconsin in 1966 and an M.F.A. from University of Wisconsin in 1967.

Gordon had numerous positions in academia and institutes including as assistant professor at University of California-Berkeley (1969-70), associate professor at Mills College in Oakland, CA (1974-75), associate professor at Concordia University, Montreal, Canada (1975-98), visiting lecturer at the San Francisco Art Institute (1969-70), and positions at University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon Canada (1984), Lakeside Studio, Michigan (1986, 1988) East Carolina University, North Carolina (1989).

Gordon's work is represented in a wide variety of museums and personal collections. He has pieces at the Smithsonian American Art Museum, the Fine Arts Museum of San Francisco, and the Block Museum of Art at Northwestern University.

Gordon's work is reflective of his social, intellectual and moral development as a man, with all of his characteristics—most notably having been an American Black man—he searched for those universal truths, which best expressed his own perspective on humanity. The phenomena absorbed by him—and the resulting metaphors susceptible of being followed in his work—reflect with a certain linearity the events in the artist's life. In breaking the bonds that tied him to the poorest parts of Philadelphia, to a city that had no understanding, let alone respect, for the activities of the intellect or the beauties of art, and to an American society in its most conservative pre-Kennedy mode, Gordon sought and achieved in his art a freedom originating with redemption from the clichés of race and social standing, working towards a luminous vision of human life.