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SFAI & Manuel Neri (1930-2021)


1956 6 Gallery, Bruce McGaw, Manuel Neri after installing their show, (image from LYRICAL VISION catalog)


Manuel Neri (1930-2021) was born in Sanger, California in 1930. His parents immigrated to the U.S. from Mexico, following the Mexican Revolution. Neri studied with Elmer Bischoff, Claire Falkenstein, Frank Lobdell, and Bob Howard at the California School of Fine Arts (SFAI) from 1956-1958, after he attended CCAC. By the Fall of 1959 Manuel was hired at the School to teach “Drawing & Color.” His roll book (shown below) lists Carlos Villa along with grad students, Bernice Bing, and Joan Brown. Neri’s fellow faculty that semester included Gregory Bateson, Richard Diebenkorn, Dorr Bothwell, Nathan Oliveira, Deborah Remington, Ernie Kim, and his good friend, Bruce McGaw. Manuel’s 1963 “Artist’s Bio” for the SFAI Art Bank (also shown below) highlights his teaching at SFAI, his shows at the 6 Gallery, Spatsa Gallery, Dilexi, and as the one time “Director, 6 Gallery.” As one of the sculptors of the Bay Area Figurative Movement, Neri is identified by his iconic, life-size, figurative work, with painted and abraded surfaces, created from plaster and marble. Neri received an Honorary Doctorate from SFAI in 1990.




With permission, SFAA is re-posting the emails Jeff Gunderson Librarian/Archivist Anne Bremer Memorial Library has been sending out since March 2020. Please enjoy this magnificent archive.