Hayward Oubre (1916-2006)

Tyler Fine Art is pleased to present a retrospective exhibition and sale of the works of artist Hayward Oubre.


Hayward Oubre’s art was met with critical success from the time he graduated Dillard University in New Orleans, as its first fine art major in 1939, throughout his long career as an artist and teacher, his repeated award-winning participation in the ever-important Atlanta (University) Annuals, to most recently, with its inclusion in the museum exhibition, Tradition Redefined: The Larry and Brenda Thompson Collection of African American Art.  Oubre was a talented painter, printmaker and sculptor, trained by two of the best: Hale Woodruff and Elizabeth Prophet.  He won numerous awards for his work in all mediums.  Oubre was also a dedicated life-long educator, holding positions at Florida A & M University, followed by Alabama State College and finally Winston-Salem State University in North Carolina, retiring in 1981.  Perhaps it was what Oubre didn’t do—what he refused to do—that was his greatest contribution.  He didn’t automatically accept the standard: he developed a concise study of color mixing and color relationships that challenged the long-standing “color triangle” developed by Johann Wolfgang Goethe; he rejected the popular trends and the entries submitted for art exhibitions, calling for a higher standard and more innovative and challenging approach—and devised a technique of making sculptures from twisting common coat hangers without the use of welds or solder.  Regarded as the “master of stabile”, his work was often compared to Alexander Calder.  

The exhibition includes etchings, drawings, paintings, and sculpture in four mediums: wire, painted plaster, wood and bronze.  The works span 40 years, from the 1940s to the 1980s—virtually his entire career as a professional artist.