Neri, Manuel bio

Manuel Neri (American b. 1930)


Manuel Neri is an American artist best known for his uniquely painterly figurative sculpture. A member of the “second generation” of Bay Area Figurative Movement, Neri was a prominent figure in the San Francisco art scene for many years. Born on April 12, 1930 in Sanger, CA, he attended the California School of Fine Arts (currently the San Francisco Art Institute) where he studied under Richard Diebenkorn and Elmer Nelson Bischoff. Initially working with junk materials such as wire and cardboard, Neri moved towards figurative sculpture crafted mainly in plaster. His primary subjects are life-sized women applied with brightly-colored paint, often texturing the surfaces of his sculptures with scratches and gouges. He went on to marry another member of the second generation of the Bay Area Figurative Movement, the painter Joan Brown. Neri was honored by the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters in 1984, and was the recipient of a lifetime achievement award from the International Sculpture Center in 2006. His work is included in numerous public collections, such as the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden in Washington, D.C., the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, and the Seattle Art Museum.