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University Press of Mississippi will be distributing the catalog.

Carroll Cloar: In His Studio
Art Museum of the University of Memphis

An intimate glimpse into the great art and the working environment of a
renowned painter.

One of the South¹s most beloved painters, Carroll Cloar (1913-1993) worked
daily from 1959 until his death in his home on South Greer Street in
Memphis, Tennessee. His studio was lined with newspapers and magazine
articles that held special significance or inspiration, and he added
memorabilia from various periods of his life. The walls were a work in
progress and microcosm of Cloar¹s world. The studio, reconstructed in the
Art Museum of the University of Memphis in 2013, is the point of departure
for considering Cloar¹s drawings, lithographs, and paintings as well as
his artistic practice. Cloar was an insightful and witty writer as well as
a painter, and selections from his manuscripts furnish the text.

Cloar was born and raised in Crittenden County, Arkansas, and educated at
Southwestern (Rhodes) College and the Memphis Academy of Art. In 1936 he
went to New York to study at the Art Students League expecting never to
return to the South, but after twenty years of living on and off in New
York, interrupted by years of international travel, World War II service,
and more travel, he returned. As a tireless visual and verbal observer of
the uniqueness and universality of places and patterns of behavior, he
gradually realized that the South of his childhood, engrained in his soul,
was equal in its authentic character to any of his exotic destinations.
Carroll Cloar: In His Studio includes eighty black and white and forty
color photographs and provides the most extensive published treatment of
Cloar and his work since 1977.



Virtual Overview        
Main Gallery        

carroll cloar's studio reconsctructed at AMUM #summerofcloar

a panarama of carroll cloar's reconstructed studio, click to enlarge image

Carroll Cloar's studio reconstructed within AMUM's main gallery as part of the Summer of Cloar. Look for participating related venues with the following hash tag  #summerofcloar.

Enter The Carroll Cloar Studio Archive

Details from the studio of Carroll Cloar, Part of the exhibition at AMUM 

Cloar Studio Detail (window view)

Carroll Cloar's Final Interview here

Summer with Carroll Cloar video teaser

In His Studio: Carroll Cloar June 8 – September 7, 2013 

I am half writer and half painter. If an artist is honest, he cannot really paint anything he does not feel deeply. "The Garden of Love," Carroll Cloar, unpublished manuscript

After traveling the world seeking inspiration, Carroll Cloar came to realize that he wanted to return and draw inspiration from the place he loved—the South. It was home.

The exhibition "In His Studio: Carroll Cloar" at Art Museum University of Memphis (AMUM) is from June 8 through September 7. AMUM will feature some of the artist's earliest work, his reconstructed studio, and materials from the University of Memphis Libraries Special Collections providing a glimpse into Cloar's working methods through his writings, photographs, drawings and sketches.

While a student at the Art Students League in New York, Cloar sent home for photographs of various relatives and began a series of lithographs based on the land and people of East Arkansas. These lithographs earned Cloar his earliest recognition as an artist—the Art Students League awarded him a McDowell Traveling Fellowship in 1940, and one lithograph was exhibited at the 1939-40 New York World's Fair.

"In His Studio: Carroll Cloar" will feature these early lithographs from 1930 to 1947 along with family photographs and stories in the artist's own words pulled from the Carroll and Pat Cloar Collection.

When Cloar returned to the South in 1953 and 1955, he was again drawn to his childhood memories and the landscape around Earle, Arkansas, but changed from somber lithographs to paintings in casein tempera with a more colorful palette. By 1956 his first one-man show opened in New York to critical acclaim.

Within 3 years he purchased an old frame house on South Greer in Memphis. Cloar redesigned the façade and interior, turning the front part of the house into his studio—the studio that will be reconstructed in AMUM for the exhibition "In His Studio: Carroll Cloar." He kept his studio utilitarian except for covering the walls with newspapers, a bullfight poster from his travels in Spain and his Army Air Corps jacket. He lived and worked in this house until his death.


Nostalgia, 1940, lithograph, AMUM 2012.4.16

Nostalgia, 1940, lithograph, AMUM 2012.4.16


To celebrate the artist Carroll Cloar, who was born one hundred years ago in 1913, several institutions are organizing exhibitions of his work including:

"Early and Rare: Selections from the Carroll and Pat Cloar Collection" at Special Collections, University of Memphis Libraries June 6 – September 15, 2013.

Please note the library hours for the month of August in regards to visiting the Library to see "Early and Rare: Selections from the Carroll and Pat Cloar Collection" at Special Collections, University of Memphis Libraries June 6 – September 15, 2013.


"The Crossroads of Memory: Carroll Cloar and the American South" at Memphis Brooks Museum of Art, June 8 through September 15, 2013

"Carroll Cloar: Southern Raconteur" at David Lusk Gallery (paintings, drawings, lithographs) 7 June – 27 July, 2013

"Crossing Place, The Carroll Cloar Drawing Collection" at Christian Brothers University, Sam and Beverly Ross Gallery, May 31 – July 26, 2013

"Carroll Cloar Native Son" at Mid-South Community College June 14 –September 20, 2013

Cloar Related links (know a link that should be added submit here):

AMUM opens to the public here

Bike to Cloar Info here

DLG Press Release here

Carroll Cloar DLG Bio 

Transporting Carroll Cloar's Studio here


Transportation of Carroll Cloar's actual Studio to AMUM HERE Cloar Studio transportation to AMUM 2013 
   Edwin G. Frank, Preservation and Special Collections Librarian


Cloar Up Close Article by Fredric Koeppel 

Enough Cloar To Go Around by Peggy Reisser

Find art by Carroll Cloar featured as part of #summerofcloar at the following locations:

special collections memphis brooks museum of art david lusk gallery  
 cbu delta arts amum  

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 except between temporary exhibits
and on University holidays.
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Phone: (901) 678-2224
Fax: (901) 678-5118


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Last Updated: 10/3/13