Kevin Appel, Stephen Barker,
and Cecile Whiting
September 29, 2018 – January 5, 2019
First Glimpse was the first opportunity for the public to view a selection of works from the formerly privately-held collection of Gerald Buck—now one of two foundational collections for UCI’s burgeoning Institute and Museum of California Art.
For more than twenty years, Orange County developer Gerald Buck amassed a collection of artworks in a wide variety of genres and media. At his death, Buck gifted the collection to UCI with an intention for the works be studied, exhibited, and appreciated by students, scholars, and the public. First Glimpse presented about fifty works by California artists including Peter Alexander, Carlos Almaraz, Joan Brown, Mary Corse, Richard Diebenkorn, Ed Kienholz, Helen Lundeberg, Agnes Pelton, Ed Ruscha, James Turrell, Wayne Thiebaud, among others.
The exhibition, co-curated by Kevin Appel, Stephen Barker, and Cecile Whiting, was presented at the University Art Gallery and Contemporary Art Center Gallery on UCI’s campus and places California artists as central in launching new movements, altering historical courses, and following powerful individual vision. Presenting Abstract Classicism, Expressionism, Assemblage, California Funk art, Light and Space work, and artists that fall outside of definition, the exhibition establishes the state as a crucible of innovation and creativity.
“To be in the presence of so many historically significant California artists reminds us of just how impactful California art has been on the larger history of modern and contemporary art. Even in such a wide range of disciplines and styles of expression, the works present in First Glimpse are a thorough look at the progression of creative expression over important moments in our history and in our California culture.” (irvineweekly.com)