Willie Birch | the artist
The artist Willie Birch
Born 1942, New Orleans, USA.
Lives and works in New Orleans, .
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Birch returned to his home town in the late 1990s, after spending two decades in New York, and now lives near the French Quarter. The communal street life and impromptu parades of his neighborhood figure prominently in this body of work. Birch also focuses on Mardi Gras [Fat Tuesday]a distinctly regional pre-Lenten revelry, unlike anything else in the United States, that is a huge tourist draw and a compelling part of New Orleans lore…
Birch’s recent work captures the dignity and the intimacy of friends and passers-by in his hometown of New Orleans. His large-scale paintings on paper not only reveal a sensitivity for the subject but dazzle with his knowledge of the formal qualities of painting…
Although Birch’s earlier funky, folk-inspired sculptures are widely known, these elegant charcoal drawings are newly on view in this exhibition, the first major museum survey of Birch’s work. Birch attended Southern University in Baton Rouge and New Orleans, Lousiana, from which he received his B.A. prior to his earning his graduate degree at Maryland Institute College of Art, Baltimore…
Willie Birch stands in his painting studio in the 7th Ward neighborhood of New Orleans.