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date: 30 October 2020

Copley, William Nelsonlocked

(b New York, Jan 24, 1919; d Key West, FL, May 7, 1996).
  • Diane Tepfer

Extract

(b New York, Jan 24, 1919; d Key West, FL, May 7, 1996).

American dealer, patron, and painter. Born into a newspaper-publishing family, he responded to his upper-class establishment upbringing by seeking out ambivalence in art and life. Copley established the Copley Galleries in Los Angeles in 1948 with John Ployardt as partner and showed Magritte, Max Ernst, Roberto Matta, Man Ray, Yves Tanguy, and Joseph Cornell, as well as younger local artists. He regularly purchased a work from each show and built up his collection. Self-taught as a painter, in 1951 he closed the gallery to paint and moved to Paris, where he bought directly from the Surrealists. He returned to the USA in 1963, living and working in Roxbury, CT. He regularly exhibited at the Phyllis Kind Gallery, New York, and elsewhere in the USA and Europe. He used Magritte’s method of ‘assembling images’ in his own narrative figurative paintings. As in some Surrealist works, eroticism is the guiding force in brightly coloured and witty paintings. He compared ...

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