Taylor’d To Perfection…

Did you know that every Friday night the Whitney Museum of American Art is Pay-What-You-Wish between 7-10pm?

Such a treat.

We headed downtown for dinner and to get a glimpse of the new Henry Taylor exhibit, Henry Taylor: B Side.

I find the man and his work fascinating and not reflective of the title. Being in the music business, companies often put a less stellar track on the B side, one that will most likely get lost in the shuffle.

Taylor’s works sing and stay with you like the lyrics of a great song.

For more than thirty years, the Los Angeles–based artist, born in 1958 and one of eight children, has portrayed people from widely different backgrounds…family members, friends, neighbors, celebrities, politicians and strangers all with a mixture of raw immediacy and tenderness.

Taylor’s paintings, executed quickly and instinctually from memory, newspaper clippings, snapshots, and in-person sittings, are light-hearted, intimate, and at times, somber. He combines bold color, intimate detail and loose brushstrokes to create paintings that feel alive.

Taylor relates to his subjects, capturing their mood, social milieu in many life-size images, guided by a deep-seated empathy for people and their experiences.

Taylor offers a view of everyday life in the United States that is grounded in the experiences of his own community, including incarceration, poverty and often deadly interactions with police that disproportionately affect Black Americans.

Born in Ventura, California, Taylor grew up nearby in Oxnard. While studying art at Oxnard Community College and later the California Institute of the Arts (CalArts), he worked at the Camarillo State Mental Hospital as a psychiatric technician for a decade on the night shift and sketched many of the patients.

He later moved to downtown Los Angeles becoming a key figure in the developing artist community.

Take the tour:

Jackie Robinson
Henry’s stove. He cooked a lot. His mother taught him. He found her name, Cora, in the cornbread.
Martin Luther King & Family
“The Times Thay Aint a Changing, Fast Enough!” (2017), a portrait and a passionate appeal for Philando Castile, the police shooting victim.
Alice Coachman, historic track star who won a Gold Metal in high jump at the 1948 London Olympics.
Self Portrait. He modeled it after Henry VIII which was his nickname.
Taylor with his son and daughter.

Henry Taylor: B Side Whitney Museum of American Art 99 Gansevoort Street New York City. Open Tuesday-Sunday 10:30am-6pm. Friday nights until 10pm. Henry Taylor: B Side Exhibit runs through January 28th, 2024.


  1. Do you happen to know the name of the painting with the man and a sign “Dog Father Dog food” standing in front of a mic????

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