Scenes of American Labor
September 1 - November 9, 2005
Opening Reception: Saturday, September 3, 2005 from 5-7pm

Sullivan Goss - Downtown

7 East Anapamu Street, Santa Barbara, CA 93101
Contact, Jeremy Tessmer
Phone, (805) 730-1460, Fax: (805) 730-1462

E-mail, <>
Web site, <>
Open Daily, 10am-5:30pm

John Nava. “Check Out”, 2005, oil on canvas. 63 x 63 inches.

Sullivan Goss – An American Gallery is pleased to present Scenes of American Labor an exhibition of fine oils and works on paper that document the history of American labor in art.
“For years, I have assembled paintings by Americans of Americans putting this country together.  It has been my own private labor of love.  Perhaps it was watching men and women in the fields of New Mexico, or thinking of my grandmother in Dunkirk during the Great Depression working in a shop full of seamstresses, or working alongside my father as we built or added to our houses in California.  I have always loved labor: the sweat of it, the motion of it, the product of it.
When I was younger I could not help but enjoy the art of Thomas Hart Benton and John Stuart Curry featuring men and women, like human vortices, churning raw land, raw iron, raw wood into the sustenance of life. Who will ever forget the simple honesty of Grant Wood’s ‘American Gothic.’  A fine friend of mine argues that I am a brainwashed victim of the American work ethic.  Whether it is true or not does not matter.  I love my work.  I was a carpenter, who became a teacher, who became an engineer, who retired to the profession of dealing in art.  I have loved it all.

For me one of the greatest moments in American Art was during the 1930’s when Roosevelt championed the unemployed artists of this country to ‘show America getting back on its feet.’  This was the creed of WPA artists as they featured the swing of the hammer, the hum of the industry, the muscle of human toil.
Labor as a subject matter has never lost its charm for us.  Through every movement, American artists have found a way to incorporate labor’s effort.  This Sullivan Goss exhibition documents the American worker in their efforts from the late 1800’s to today.  The weave of our national  fabric is obvious within these paintings.  Polish, Irish, Mexican, African, English and all others have left their mark through toil.  Without their effort there is not one skyscraper, not a cleaned hotel, not food on the table, no soul to our country.”                                  
- Frank Goss, Owner

Sullivan Goss – An American Gallery
is pleased to announce Scenes of American Labor, featuring the works of vintage and contemporary artists:  Anders Aldrin, Bo Bartlett, Robert Clyde Bentley, John Bernhardt, Colin Campbell Cooper, Ray Cuevas, John Davies, Ali El-Bermani, Pamela Enticknap, Jon Francis, Gunther Gerzso, Robin Gowen, Steve Huston, Emil Kosa, Jr., Don Freeman, Richard Haines, Wayne LaCom, Betty Lane, Dan Lutz, Dan McCleary, Jay Mercado, Ben Messick, John Nava, R. Kenton Nelson, Joe Pastor, Hank Pitcher, Millard Sheets, George Washington Smith, Jack R. Smith, Shiba Ward, Bernard Baruch Zackheim & Marco Zim.  We will have an opening reception, Labor Day weekend, on Saturday September 3rd from 5 to 7 pm, amid a no host bar.  Please feel free to contact Jaimie Lilienstein for images and additional information.

Return to Gallery Pages