A recent show focused on the Abstract Figurative Expressionist from 1952 to the 65s highlighted the work of Jay Milder, an American painter who is also considered a Brazilian citizen.

“Inventing Dowtown”, exhibited by the well known Grey Gallery at New York University, in March, is a group exhibition created by the curator and art historian Mellissa Rachleff, Ph.D., who put together the work of more than 45 downtown artists from the 50’s, including Jay Milder.

Jay Milder (born 1934) is a figurative expressionist painter of the second-generation New York School. He began studying painting at the Chicago Art Institute. In 1957, Milder and his family moved to Staten Island, New York, where his career took off. Jay Milder’s paintings have undergone various stylistic changes since the 1950s. However the most common and important consistency has been his organic form of Expressionism. Biblical references have always played an important role in Milder’s work.

Jay Milder was made as a Cultural Ambassador between Brazil and the United State by Assis Chateaubriand, an art collector and the owner of a newspaper in Rio de Janeiro. Milder had four months solo exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art, Rio de Janeiro in 2006. Dinah Guimaraens, Ph.D. was the curator and the liaison to the Guarani tribe where Milder also received the honor the Honorary Chamam from the Cacique Tobi, the highest priest at the Guarani tribe, in Rio de Janeiro.

Milder paintings are well known in art galleries and museums in the USA and Brazil, where he had a retrospective exhibition in museums, beginning with the National Museum of Fine Arts, Rio de Janeiro, 2000; Museum of Modern Art, in Salvador, Bahia, 2003; and Museum of Modern Art of Rio de Janeiro, a two-months show held over by popular demand for an additional two months, 2006-2007; as well as at the Federal Museum of Brasilia, 2009. He was also invited in 2010 to exhibit at the major graffiti space in São Paulo, and created an important graffiti mural with Kobra, who is considered the number one graffiti artist in Brazil. Milder was the first American painter to be invited to make a permanent graffiti mural in São Paulo in their major boulevard, Rebolsas Avenue. He started working with spray painting in 1958, and was also an inspiration to Jean-Michel Basquiat, particularly with his use of graffiti symbols as a source of inspiration.

His next project is to create a mural here in New York City with Kobra.

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