June was a visionary artist and activist and a friend one could always count on. Wonderful times spent together are memorialized in our video series Conversations with Artists: Chicago and Conversations with Artists: Waterworks

June's many friends around the world will miss her very much. We extend our heartfelt condolences to her family, and staff. Here are a couple of articles about the great June Wayne:

LA Times
NY Times



June Wayne's Water Works

In an ongoing series, MB Abram Galleries introduced Artists of the Seas, focusing on the Vietnamese fishing community of East New Orleans. As we began that Conversation, we promised that we would  be bringing you some exceptional new art based on a water theme.

Inaugurating this series, we have been extremely honored to present rare water themed original lithographs from June Wayne, celebrated visual artist and founder of internationally renowned Tamarind Lithography Workshop. We are now pleased to add water themed art from other international artists to the wonderful original contribution of Wayne.

Wayne’s first solo exhibition was at the age of 17 in her hometown of Chicago, followed in 1936 by one at the Palacio de Bellas Artes in Mexico City. By 1938, Wayne was on the WPA Easel Project in Chicago – and had become a “regular” in a cutting-edge culture of writers, actors, and scientists, some of whom were to become world famous (Saul Bellow, Nelson Algren, Irene Rice-Pereira, Studs Turkel, Gertrude Abercrombie and many others).

In 1960, with recognition and funding from visionary W. McNeil ("Mac") Lowry of the Ford Foundation, New York, Wayne founded Tamarind Lithography Workshop (named for her street) to revitalize the foundering art of lithography in the USA. Artists Ed Ruscha, Sam Francis, Louise Nevelson, Ed Moses and many other now famous artists created editions at Tamarind during the ‘60s. In 1970, Wayne transferred Tamarind to its new home at the University of New Mexico, where it will celebrate its 50th anniversary this September 2010 as the Tamarind Institute.

June Wayne’s creative milieu includes drawing, painting, tapestry, film, collage, and lithography. Her “Dorothy Series” presents a visual biography of the artist’s mother, Dorothy Kline, in 20 lithographs and an accompanying video. “The Dorothy Series” powerfully reveals Dorothy through her own voice using actual artifacts and objects of Dorothy’s life. Sharing the snapshot quality of film (Wayne calls the suite a “film in twenty freeze frames"), the “Dorothy Series” is the artist’s most frequently exhibited work and was recently on view at the National Museum for Women in Washington, D.C.

The artist’s monumental contemporary tapestries, woven under her direction in France in the 1970's will open as a landmark, solo exhibit at the Art Institute of Chicago November 2010 (click here). These and other works are illustrated in the 460 page Catalogue Raisonné, June Wayne, The Art of Everything (University of Rutgers Press, 2007) and are represented in major museums and private collections worldwide.

It is a special honor for MB Abram Galleries to offer a select group of unique original lithographs created by June Wayne relating to our current water theme. Each of these lithographs come from small editions, many of which were long ago exhausted. Obtained from the artist's private collection, the prints on offer are either one of a kind or have become one of the last available from the edition. This represents a unique opportunity to acquire exceedingly rare artwork from one of the great artists of our time. Indeed, Wayne has been called by Jorge de Sousa “the incontestable pioneer of contemporary lithography.”

We are delighted to be able to present a video filmed recently in Wayne’s Tamarind Studios in which she speaks engagingly about these works of art and the mysterious water which inspired them. It has been both a privilege and an inspiration (and a lot of fun) spending time with the artist in her studio. We hope you will enjoy this time with her and her works as well. We anticipate a more extensive visit with Wayne in our Conversations with Artists series in the near future.