When I first saw the beautifully rendered graphite drawings of artist Daniel Bretton Tisdale, they called to mind the Harlem Renaissance-era portraits of Winold Reiss, with their fully articulated faces and simple outlines suggesting clothing. The Watts, California native, armed with an MFA from Otis/Parsons School of Design is proficient in several mediums including drawing, painting, performance and photography. He has been exhibited in over 100 galleries and museums including the Smithsonian in DC; the Whitney, Studio Museum in Harlem and International Center of Photography ICP in New York; the Institute of Contemporary Art in Boston; the Jewish Museum in San Francisco and the National Civil Rights Museum in Memphis.
His work has garnered several awards and fellowships such as the National Endowment of the Arts (NEA) and the White House Millennium Arts Council and is among the permanent collections of the Norton and MacArthur Foundations.
He has distinguished himself as an educator at Teacher’s College at Columbia University as well as the Getty, Bronx and New Museums. Through his Tisdale Studio, he is now offering master drawing lessons at the intermediate and advanced levels for private students. For further information, contact him at TisdaleStudio@yahoo.com.
“James Baldwin,” 2007, (graphite on Italian handmade paper) from the “Harlem Masters” series.