Bruce Cody Biography
Since the early 1980’s Bruce Cody has been regarded as one of the premiere painters of large urban and small town architectural motifs. His contemporary images range from high-rise towers with busy urban activities to small, purpose built structures such as gas stations, motels, theaters.
In all of his paintings the rich light and shadows of the Western landscape are the primary motive for selecting his subjects. Light pouring on a sign covered façade reflects his interest and early years of being in his father’s neon sign shop. Learning to create hand painted signs was the seminal experience that led him to the serious study and dedication to fine art studies of painting and printmaking. He graduated from the University of Wyoming and earned a Master of Fine Arts Degree at Washington State University.
Developing his skills and aesthetic preferences during seventeen years as a university art teacher, he resigned his tenured professorship at Colorado State University to devote his life to painting in 1983. Since that time he and his wife Charlene lived in Denver, CO and Santa Fe, NM where he has earned much positive acclaim and numerous collectors of his oil paintings. In Santa Fe he and Charlene owned the highly regarded Charlene Cody Gallery from 1994 until 2005.
At the heart of his work exists a positive observation of the American scene that records and mirrors our shared experiences of daily life and journeys across the United States.
He has presented twenty-five one man exhibits since 1984. His paintings are included in thirty public museum collections, over fifty corporate collections and in nearly 500 private collections in the U.S., Europe and Japan.
Bruce’s works have been extensively reviewed in newspapers, magazines and art books during the last three decades.
Bruce and his wife Charlene currently live in Sun City, Az. He continues to paint both outdoors on location of his subjects and in his studio. He is also teaching drawing and painting classes at the Sundial and Lake View Recreation Centers in Sun City.
The paintings of Bruce Cody are the culminations of over forty years of devotion to visual art. Mr. Cody’s work has always contained a reference to the world seen by the artist, even during the years in which he painted in an abstract or expressionistic manner.
After many years devoted to drawing and fine art printmaking Mr. Cody returned to painting as his major focus in 1972. As early as 1961 Mr. Cody painted outdoors on location. He focused his efforts en Plein-aire in 1975 prior to a Sabbatical leave from teaching in 1976-77 in London, England where he did extensive outdoor painting. By 1983, after resigning his tenured teaching position at Colorado State University, and moving to Denver he shifted to highly developed studio paintings. Employing photographic references focused on the urban and rural forms experienced by all of us, he developed a broader, looser style than the works by the Photo Realist artists. The works of Denver subjects became widely collected but by 1992 Bruce and his wife Charlene moved to Santa Fe to increase the artist’s exposure and collector base. By 1994 he and Charlene opened the widely respected Charlene Cody Gallery that they maintained until the fall of 2005.
Mr. Cody’s current work is the result of road trips, often on the lesser traveled roads throughout the southwest and southern California. The subjects that have caught his attention are old movie theatres, cafes and diners, motels and gas stations. All of his subjects are places that currently exist. His works are reflections of the American penchant to find new places of opportunity and they are part of our time and place. His subjects are familiar but at the same time contain strong visual intrigue. Cody is quick to point out his work is not about nostalgia. It is an effort to capture the places we all encounter but often fail to fully appreciate as significant parts of our lives. He simply seeks elegance and subtle beauty in the commonplace.
Mr. Cody has work included in over thirty public collections including the Jack Blanton Museum in Dallas, TX, The Seattle Art Museum. Additionally his work has been acquired for over fifty corporate collections across the U.S. including Citicorp, Exxon-Mobil, Qwest, and Hilton Hotels. His work is in nearly five hundred private collections in the U.S., Europe and Japan. Among his collectors are the actors Burt Reynolds and Paul Newman, Vice President and Mrs. Dick Cheney and the widely read American historians Douglas Brinkley, Gary Gallagher and Joan Waugh and the author Dianne Gabaldon.
His work has been included in many national publications including American Artist Magazine,
Southwest Art, and American Art Collector.
Bruce Cody received his BA in Art at the University of Wyoming and his Master of Fine Arts at Washington State University. Following eighteen years as a faculty member at three different university art departments he resigned his position at Colorado State University in 1983 to devote full attention to painting while residing in Denver. He was also a founding faculty member of the Denver Art Students League from 1985 until 1992. During years in Colorado he also produced court room drawings for NBC News and its affiliate station in Denver.
The artist and his wife currently live in Sun City Arizona.
Bruce Cody Class Description:
The class on watercolor deals with both Transparent and Opaque watercolor.
Materials needed and their purpose is discussed as they relate to technique and color concepts. Materials discussed include types of paper, brush selection and use, color selection, and miscellaneous materials needed for successful paitings.
Emphasis is focused on learning to do Primary Drawing in preparation to painting. Color, Values and Composition are the major focus of class. Students will learn to do Washes, Blended Color Changes, Value Structure, Texture and Modifying an image to improve it through the removal of color.
Students can work from photos, drawings or from paintings done outdoors.
Examples of excellent watercolors are shown to the class with discussion regarding color, composition, subject matter and technique.
Each class meeting begins with a group critique and discussion. Students then work on their painting and each receives guided instruction.
Basic and Intermediate Drawing
4 class Meetings $48 Thursdays 9 AM- Noon
A focus on drawing materials and the use of them as expressive tools to portray observed objects and space. Instruction will focus on the concept that good drawing is good “seeing”, meaning if you can study a form and its nuances of shape, values, negative space, and source of lighting direction, a person can convey on a two dimensional surface the world of three dimensional space. A wide variety of drawing tools will be used along with various papers.
To develop skills of seeing form and to understand the expressive and personal ways of drawing objects from direct observation. To understand ways to employ photos as an aid to drawing. Students will study line, shape, values, composition , texture, and perspective. Each class will work from still life arrangements or photos. Classes will have critiques on a weekly basis and also assignments to work on outside of class hours.
Student Materials Required:
Drawing Pencils, # 2H, 2B, 4B, 6B.
Carpenter Pencil or Lacquer Covered Carbon Pencil 2 or 4B
2 or 3 Sticks of Vine or Willow Charcoal,
1 Soft Paper Wrapped Charcoal Pencil, 1 Medium or Hard Wood Covered Charcoal Pencil
Conte’ Crayons, 1 each, White, Black and a Brown of choice
1 Kneaded Rubber Eraser, 1Pink Pearl or Plastic Eraser
1 Newsprint Pad 18 x 24” 1 Sketch Book 9 x12” or 14 x 17”
Advanced Drawing Class
Drawing Pencils in following grades: H2, H, B2, B4, B6
Woodless Carbon Drawing Pencils, 2B, 4B,
Conte’ Crayons: Black Hard or Medium, Browns, 1 White
Vine Charcoal, Soft or Medium
*Grease Pencil or China Marker , 1 Black and 1 White
2 Felt Tip Pens such as Sharpie Ultra Fine and Fine or Calligraphy
Bottle of Black or Brown Waterproof India Ink
*Drawing Pen Handle and 2 or 3 metal points such as Speedball brand or Crow Quill
*Various size and types of soft brushes such as watercolor sable or synthetic in sizes of your choice.
Erasers: Kneaded Rubber, Pink Pearl or Art Gum
Small Mixing Tray for watercolor or ink washes
Small hand Held Pencil Sharpener, Sandpaper sharpening Pad
Sketch Book, White Paper 9×12” or larger
Newsprint Pad, 18 X 24”
*High quality drawing papers such as Canson, Arches, Rives, Stonehenge16 x20 or larger. Hot press (smooth) paper for dry media. Watercolor paper such as Arches 140lb for water media.
Drawing Board with clips
In addition to drawing from life we will also do some projects using Photos. Start collecting some interesting images.
Miscellaneous items such as paper towels, water container, etc.
*Items not listed on previous Drawing Class Materials
Palo Verde Art Club
Oil Painting Class
6 Class Meetings $72 Tuesdays 1-4PM
Oil Painting Materials and Techniques for Beginners and Experienced
Students of Oil, Acrylic, and/or Watercolor. Instruction will focus on students working directly from still life arrangements and specific projects related to art history examples, selection of photo sources,
and outdoor painting. Each session will include presentations on Materials, Color Theory, Painting Styles and types and /or a Critique of work in progress.
To develop knowledge and self-confidence in the application of and use of various grounds including panels and canvas, Brush selection, Painting medium types, Color selection, Developing paintings from first drawing to Block-in and Completion, Paint application, Value range and Color Harmony, Glazing and Layering. Also to develop critical analysis and self direction within the art of producing artwork, framing and public display of one’s art.
Student Materials required:
2 9×12” canvas panels with cardboard backing
2 9 x12” stretched canvases
4 12 x16” or larger stretched canvases
Bristle Brushes Long Handles: Flats or Brights #4, 8, 10 or 12
“ “ “ “ : Filberts #2, 4, 6
Quick Drying Titanium White Oil or Alkyd White , Large Tube
Bottle of Winsor-Newton Liquin Medium
Bottle of Gamsol Odorless Thinner, Jar for Cleaning brushes, Paper towels or cotton rags. Carrying box or Cloth Bag
Tubes of Oil Paint: Hansa or Cadmium Yellow, Yellow Ochre, Bright Red,
Aliziron Crimson, Ultramarine Blue, Thalo Blue, Viridian Green, Burnt Sienna, Burnt Umber, Ivory Black. Optional: Sap Green, Paynes Gray