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“Nature is the source of my continued inspiration and changing sensory perceptions. Esthetic beauty in all forms, has always emotionally touched me, and I express with paint what I cannot with words, always exploring and searching for a new vision.”
Barbara Postel was a lifelong adventuress, afraid of nothing, excited by everything, and unflinchingly fueled by her passions. Her lust for life manifested in her painting, architecture, sculpture, photographs, writing and performance. In her paintings, she depicts natural forms through abstract techniques. Using bold and vibrant colors, she transforms ordinary forms into evocative images. Postel’s well-known Pyramid Studio, designed and built by the artist, has served as a studio, exhibition and performance space. Currently, it is being refurbished as part of The Barbara Postel Legacy Project.
In 1968, as a student artist and New York City native, Barbara was awarded the MacDowell Traveling Scholarship, which allowed her to steep in the cultures of France, Italy, Spain, Morocco, Nigeria, Puerto Rico, Cuba and Mexico; all of which profoundly shaped her work. Additionally, she received merit scholarships from the Art Students’ League of New York and the National Academy of Design. Also influential was Barbara’s tutelage at Henry Hensch’s Cape Cod studio, where she fell in love with the natural world and embarked on what would be a perpetual devotion to the landscapes around her.
In the early 1970’s, the Delaware River Valley ultimately became not only Barbara’s greatest passion, but also her muse and home. Together, over the course of forty-three years, she and husband Carlos Guerrero created a sanctuary above the banks of the Delaware and the Tohickon Creek. Over the years in Bucks County, she received many local awards and some of her Delaware River landscapes are published in the Encyclopedia of Living Artists and the 1990 Women Artists Databook.
When she died in 2018, at eighty years old, she left behind a stunning body of singular works. Flowing skies, rushing water and vibrant rocks live in Barbara’s paintings; her visual documents of a life well-lived in connection with nature.
Barbara Postel. Image courtesy of the artist.
Education and Training:
Science, Academic Scholarship, CCNY, New York, New York, 1956-1958
Painting, studied with Joseph Hirsch, Sidney Dickinson, and Morris Kantor at The Art Students League, New York, New York, 1966-1968
Painting, studied landscape and outdoor figure painting with Henri Hensche, Cape Cod School, Provincetown, Massachusets, 1967
Painting, studied with Eric Eisenburger at the National Academy of Fine Art, New York, New York, 1966-1968
Painting, Independent Study at Academie Julian, Paris, France and the San Fernando Academy, Madrid, Spain, 1969
Printmaking, Etching, and Lithography, Bucks County Community College, Newtown, Pennsylvania, 1973-1974
Associates Degree in Architectural Design and Technology, Amercian Institute of Drafting, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 1979-1981
Sculpture (Casting and Wood), Computer Graphics, Color Photography, Television Production & Woodworking, 1981-1984
Mosaics, Brocades, & Tiles in the Henry Mercer Tradition, Moravian Pottery & Tile Works, Mercer Museum, Doylestown, Pennsylvania,1993
Teachers and Influences:
Admires works of: Arthur Dove, Georgia O'Keefe, Emile Nolde, Max Pechtein, Oskar Schlemmer.
Connection to Bucks County:
Barbara Postel has worked and lived in Bucks County since 1970.
Major Solo Exhibitions:
Art Students League, New York, New York, 1970
Stover Mill, Bucks County, Pennsylvania, 1974
Genest Gallery, Lambertville, New Jersey, 1987
Soho 20th Invitational, New York, New York, 1988
The Logan, New Hope, Pennsylvania, 1989
Pyramid Studios and Gallery, Pt. Pleasant, Pennsylvania, 1992, 1993, 1995
Major Group Exhibitions:
Bucks County Artists-Cross Section, Hicks Gallery,
Newtown, Pennsylvania, 1988
National Drawing Exhibition, Trenton, New Jersey, 1989
Sacred Images, Larsen-Dullman Gallery, New Hope, Pennsylvania, 1989
Art Now, Philadelphia Museum of Art , Pennsylvania, 1990
Ninth Annual Exhibition, Coryell Gallery, Lambertville, New Jersey, 1990
Changing Climates: The 90s, Joy Kreves Fine Art, Frenchtown, New Jersey, 1990
The Small Painting, Abington Art Center Gallery, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 1990
Phillips' Mill, New Hope, Pennsylvania, 1991
Image Gallery, Princeton, New Jersey, 1992
Centennial Barn Fall Exhibition, Pt. Pleasant, Pennsylvania, 1993
Altered Image Gallery, Princeton Corporate Plaza, Princeton, New Jersey, 1993
Blackburn & Yates Gallery, New Jersey, 1993, 1994
Merit Scholarships and Medals from the National Academy of Design, 1967-1968
Merit Scholarships and Medals from the Art Students League, 1967-1968
The Edward G. McDowell Traveling Fellowship, The Art Students League, 1968
The Purchase Prize Award, The Art Students League, 1968
Patrons Prize for Oil Painting, Phillips' Mill, 1980
Special Honors for Architectural Design, the American Institute of Drafting, 1981
The Lambertville Historical Society, Best in Show Award, Coryell Gallery, 1987
The Sylvan Award for Painting, Council of the Arts, Rodman House Gallery, 1987
Phillips' Mill Pastel Award, 1989
Private and corporate collections throughout the United States, Canada, Europe and Africa. Permanent private collection at the Art Students League, New York.
Pyramid Studio, 1984, Point Pleasant, Pennsylvania
1990 Woman Artists Datebook Calendar
American Artists, Third Edition, 1990
1988 Encyclopedia of Living Artists in America