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HomeContents > People > Photographers > Jeffrey Becom

Dates:  1953, 25 February -
Born:  US, IN, Shelbyville
Active:  US / Mediterranean / Mexico / Central America / South America
American photographer with a fascination for the rich colors of Central and South America and the Mediterranean. 
Artist statement: 
I come to my art as a photographer and painter with formal training as an architect. For me these three pursuits ignite one passion: painted walls. Traditional painted façades offer me subject and palette from which to derive my own artwork while I, in turn, document their history, mystery, and power. Paint then - and specifically color - is my life’s calling, whether I photograph, paint, or write books about painted color customs, myths, and meanings.
I find my inspiration in ever-more remote places populated by indigenous, ritual-bound people whose architectural color springs organically from their history, geography, and faith. I consider my photographs to be documentary: the colors, subjects, and details are captured as found, using traditional equipment and materials, and printed, using traditional wet darkroom techniques.
A dozen years pursuing painted color in the lands bordering the Mediterranean Sea were followed by a decade’s search in the lesser-known corners of Mexico and Central America. Then in 2002, I unfolded my map of South America. My search began in Peru, and so far I have wandered no further.
Jeffrey Becom (2006)

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Jeffrey N. Becom

Selected Solo Exhibitions
2005OUTSIDE OF TIME: New Photographs from Peru, Weston Gallery, Carmel, California
 HORA PERUANA / On Peruvian Time, Verve Fine Arts, Santa Fe, New Mexico
 THE ART OF TRAVEL: Photographs and Paintings, The Overlook Gallery, Nicholson Ranch / Barry Singer Gallery, Sonoma, California
 TREINTA MOMENTOS: New Photographs from Peru, John Cleary Gallery, Houston, Texas
 PERUVIAN TALES: New Work, Weston Gallery, Carmel
2004NEAR FROM AFAR: NEW PAINTINGS, Lisa Coscino Gallery, Pacific Grove, California
 FOTOSEPTIEMBRE: MAYA COLOR, Rendon Photography & Fine Art, San Antonio, Texas
 NUEVAS VISTAS: New Photographs and California Landscape Paintings, Barry Singer Gallery, Petaluma, California
2003ARCHITECT OF COLORS, Color Photographs and Oil & Wax Paintings, Verve Fine Arts, Santa Fe
 MEDITERRANEAN COLOR REVISITED, Weston Gallery, Carmel, California
2001TWO DECADES OF COLOR, Barry Singer Gallery, Petaluma
2000THE MAYA AND THEIR COLOR COSMOS, The Snite Museum of Art, University of Notre Dame, Indiana
 NEW WORKS BAYSIDE, Susan Spiritus Gallery, Newport Beach
 JEFFREY BECOM: TWENTY YEARS, Weston Gallery. Carmel
1999SANTOS Y ALMAS (Saints and Souls): Recent Images of Devotion, John Cleary Gallery, Houston
 MEXICO CENTRAL: 25 NEW IMAGES, Weston Gallery, Carmel
1998MAYA COLOR: HOUSE, CHURCH, TOMB, The Octagon Museum's merican Architectural Foundation Galleries, Washington, D.C.
 SO THAT THE SOULS MAY SING: Paint & The Days of the Dead, Center for Photographic Art, Carmel
 DEVOTION: NEW WORKS BY J. BECOM, Weston Gallery, Carmel
1997MAYA COLOR: Inaugural Exhibition, Weston Gallery, Carmel
 MAYA COLOR, Lee Marks Fine Art, Shelbyville and New York City
 MAYA COLOR, Susan Spiritus Gallery, Costa Mesa
1996OLD WORLD / NEW WORLD COLOR, Weston Gallery, Carmel
1995MESOAMERICA: NEW PHOTOGRAPHS, Weston Gallery, Carmel
1994IMAGES OF VERACRUZ, Weston Gallery, Carmel
1993ARCHITECTURAL JOURNEYS FOR THE COLORS: Retrospective, The Octagon Museum, Washington, D.C.
 ARCHITECT OF COLOR, G. Gibson Gallery, Seattle, Washington
1992COLOR, Root Gallery, Tokyo, Japan
1991PAREDES PINTADAS, Christopher Grimes Gallery, Carmel
1990MEDITERRANEAN COLOR, Evans Gallery, Portland, Maine
 MEDITERRANEAN COLOR, Susan Spiritus Gallery, Costa Mesa
1988PHOTOGRAPHS AND WATERCOLORS, Susan Spiritus Gallery, Costa Mesa
 NEW PHOTOGRAPHS, Photography West Gallery, Carmel
1986FRESCOED WALLS: WATERCOLORS, Site 311, Pacific Grove
 INTRODUCTIONS'86, Photographer's Gallery, Palo Alto
1985NEW PHOTOGRAPHS: Portugal, Spain, Italy, David Scott Meier Gallery, Mendocino
 EUROPEAN IMAGES: NEW PHOTOGRAPHS, Photography West Gallery, Carmel
1984MEDITERRANEAN IMAGES, AIA Gallery, Indianapolis
1982WATERCOLORS OF EUROPEAN ARCHITECTURE, The Bruised Reed Gallery, Monterey
 JEFFREY BEOM AQUARELLEN, Galerie de Vries & Roeloff, Rotterdam
1981WATERCOLORS OF EUROPEAN ARCHITECTURE, Philippe Bonnafont Gallery, San Francisco

Selected Group Exhibitions
2002DIAS DE LOS MUERTOS, with mixed media artists Jana Weston and Jorge Llaca, Lisa Coscino Gallery, Pacific Grove
 VISIONS BEYOND THE VINEYARD, Barry Singer Gallery at the Fine Art Photography Gallery of Mumm Winery, Napa
2001REFLECTIONS CELEBRATING DEATH, participant in installation by Mexico City artist Jorge Llaca, Lisa Coscino Gallery, Pacific Grove
 CONTEMPORARY COLOR, with Olivia Parker, Maggie Taylor, and others, Weston Gallery, Carmel
 SUMMERTIME, Robert Klein Gallery, Boston
 PHOTOS WE LOVE, Peter Fetterman Gallery, Santa Monica
 HEART FOR THE ARTS, ResMed Global Headquarters / Susan Spiritus Gallery, Poway
 LUIZ GONZALEZ PALMA / JEFFREY BECOM, Peter Fetterman Gallery, Santa Monica
 DECK THE WALLS, John Cleary Gallery, Houston
 HOLIDAY 2000, Robert Klein Gallery, Boston
1999THE PERSISTENCE OF COLOR: Jeffrey Becom & Lucas Blok, Monterey Museum of Art, Monterey
 COLORES Y CALAVERAS: SHELTERING THE SOULS WITH COLOR, with mixed media artist Jana Weston, for "Los Dias de los Muertos," Eloise Pickard Smith Gallery, Cowell College, University of California, Santa Cruz
 THE MAYA AND THEIR COLOR COSMOS, with ceramist Susie Ketchum, La Galeria de Casa Latina, Merrill College, University of California, Santa Cruz
 LOCAL FOCUS, Pacific Grove Museum of Natural History
1998FOTOFEST'98: Paul Caponigro, John Paul Caponigro, & Jeffrey Becom, John Cleary Gallery, Houston
 HENRI CARTIER-BRESSON / JEFFREY BECOM, Peter Fetterman Photographic Works of Art, Santa Monica
 PHOTO FORUM 1998, Museum of Fine Arts, Houston
1997PHOTOGRAPHS FROM THE COLLECTION, Indianapolis Museum of Art, Indianapolis
 GOLD, Sesnon Gallery, University of California, Santa Cruz
 CELEBRATING COLOR, John Cleary Gallery, Houston
 COLOR WORKS, Robert Klein Gallery, Boston
1996SELECTED ARTISTS, G. Gibson Gallery, Seattle
 PERSONAL CHOICES: Becom, Bravo, Carnochan, Kertesz, Susan Spiritus Gallery, Newport Beach
1995DIFFERENT VIEWS, Lee Marks Fine Art/Chatam Gallery, Indianapolis
1994NEW ACQUISITIONS, Snite Museum of Art, Notre Dame University
1991INDUSTRIAL STRENGTH, Evans Gallery, Portland, Maine
 INAUGURAL GROUP SHOW, Weston Gallery South, Carmel
 PHOTOGRAPHS, Lumina / Burns Fine Art Group Show, New York City
1986INDIANA WORKS ON PAPER, Editions Limited Gallery, Indianapolis
1984EUROPEAN VIEWS / AMERICAN PERSPECTIVES, Editions Limited Gallery, Indianapolis
1983NEW PHOTOGRAPHS: Jeffrey Becom & John Wimberley, Photography West Gallery, Carmel
1982NEW PHOTOGRAPHS, Perimeter Gallery, Chicago
 TRAVEL WATERCOLORS, Galerie Kunst Borsboom, Zierikzee, Holland
1981RECENT OILS & WATERCOLORS, La Belle Helene Gallery, St. Helena
1980EUROPEAN TRAVEL WATERCOLORS, with Roger Bailey, Philippe Bonnafont Gallery, San Francisco


2003One Planet (Lonely Planet Publications, Victoria, Australia), selected images
1997Maya Color: The Painted Villages of Mesoamerica (Abbeville Press, New York)
1990Mediterranean Color (Abbeville Press, New York)

1990Subject, writer, and narrator of the hour-long PBS documentary, For the Colours, A Journey Through Italy"

Articles and Other Publications
2007Painted Walls of Mexico 2007, Calendar, Heritage Graphics International and Pomegranate Publications
 Colors of Guatemala 2007, Calendar, Heritage Graphics International and Pomegranate Publications
2006Painted Walls of Mexico 2006, Calendar, Heritage Graphics International and Pomegranate Publications
2005My Place: Life Imitates Art, Carmel Magazine, November
 Colorful World, Albuquerque Journal, August
 Feature Photo: Jeffrey Becom, FastFOCUS, Pacific Center for the Photographic Arts, September
 The Short List: Jeffrey Becom, Popular Photography, September
 Bright Colors, Little Cities, Pasatiempo, The New Mexican, September,
 Note cards, Pomegranate Publications
 Note cards, The Art Group, London
2004In Living Color, Sunset Magazine, January
 A World of Difference, Marie Claire/Australia, January
2003¡Colores! 2003 Calendar, Portal Publications
 Lasting Impression, Living Colors, Departures Magazine, March/April
 Nouvelle Craftsman-Reinvented with Color, Sunset Magazine, Fall
2000Redecorate with Color, Sunset Magazine, January
 The World Beneath the Surface, South Bend Tribune, April
 Color Around the Globe, Escape Magazine, Fall
1999The Intersection of Folk and Fine Art, Journal of Folklore Research, Indiana University Folklore Institute, Volume 36, No. 1, January-April
 The Maya and Their Color Cosmos, Native Peoples Magazine, Spring
 Jeffrey Becom's Devotion, The Picture Professional, June
 Collaborative Color, Buying the Best, July
 Jeffrey Becom Portfolio, Seven Seas Magazine, Japan, August
1998Jeffrey Becom's Passion for Color, Photo District News, March
 Maya Color / Jeffrey Becom, Camera Arts, February/March
 The Colour of Maya: Life as Art in Central America, Cathay Pacific's Discovery Magazine, May
 True Colors, American Way Magazine, November
1997The Art of America, American Photo, March/April
 Using Color the Right Way, Popular Photography, June
 Wanderlust, Salon Magazine on the Web, December
1996Artist's Showcase, United Airlines' Hemispheres, February
1995Color Scheme, Nikon World, Winter
1993Translated serialization of Mediterranean Color through twelve issues of MRS Magazine, Japan
1992For the Colours, Mandarin Oriental Magazine, Spring
1991Protections and Prescriptions for the Exhibiting Photographer, Center for Photographic Art, Carmel
1986Simple Details, Popular Photography, June

2002Pacific Grove Heritage Society Architectural Design Award, Craftsman Cottage, 115 14th St.
1999Outstanding Artistic Achievement Award, City of Pacific Grove Arts Commission.
1998Lowell Thomas Gold Award for "Best Travel Book, 1997", Society of American Travel Writers
1995Rotarian Arts and Humanities award, Indiana
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