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The Janis Project

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The Janis Project
Frank Hyder

Frank Hyder’s fascination with the public sphere has manifested in a multimedia experience titled The Janis Project. Begun in 2015 and still continuing today, Hyder has created over a dozen large-scale, double-faced inflatable sculptures of heads. Hyder states of The Janis Project that each head, “which at once references Moai of Easter Island, Olmec heads and, the ancient Roman god of new endeavors, at the same time has its roots in street art and inflatable toys…Janis carries a message of equality and good will and dares to step out of the normal world of Art museums or Art Galleries to be among us. Made of resilient nylon and paint, Janis has found a place to make us all consider issues with a smile that often divide us.”

Through Oceania Cruise Line’s Artist in Residence program, Janis traveled the entire coast of Europe form Istanbul to St. Petersburg, including the British Isles. The Janis Project continues to travel the world with its growing number of sculptures.

This 48-page catalog of The Janis Project includes full color photographs of of the sculptures throughout their travels, as well as reproductions of acrylic and water color paintings of the Janis heads, along with essays by James Hennessy, Jill Leslie Furst, and Gary Michael Dault.

Frank Hyder has participated in more than 200 group shows and over 100 solo exhibitions throughout the Americas, Asia and Europe, including 12 individual exhibitions in New York City, as well as solo shows in London, Mexico City, Singapore, Toronto and Vancouver. Solo museum exhibitions in Venezuela at the Museum of Modern Art Caracas, Museo Jacobo Borges, Museum of Modern Art Zulia, Museo Universidad de Los Andes and Museum of Modern Art Coro. Other solo museum exhibitions: Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Art, Carnegie Museum CA, La Salle Museum of Art, National Museum of Catholic Art and History and Noyes Museum. One of ten artists whose heroic inflatables formed the “Giants in the City” exhibition in Miami during Art Basel Miami. He also had a six-month exhibition in the Philadelphia Airport. He is among 80 artists selected as part of an exhibit of graduates of the Maryland Institute College of Art showcasing 160 years of artists. He recently showed his “Janis Project” at the Museum of the Pennsylvania Academy of Art and the Art Students League of New York City.

Education: BFA – Maryland Institute College of Art, attended the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture and MFA – University of Pennsylvania.

Collections: Library of Congress, Philadelphia Museum of Art, Pennsylvania Convention Center, Grand Rapids Museum of Art, Woodmere Museum, La Salle Museum, James Michener Museum of Art, Museum of Modern Art, Caracas, Museum Jacobo Borges, Caracas, Museum of Contemporary Art Zulia, Maracaibo, Venezuela.

Major Awards: National Endowment grant in experimental prints, Senior Fulbright Research Grant to Venezuela, U.S. Embassy Cultural Grants, MidAtlantic NEA, two Pennsylvania State Council of the Arts Grants and an International Art Programming Network Partners Grant (Bolivia, Peru, Turkey). First Place National Painting show at Brenau University, Georgia. First Prize for Painting and Painting on Paper in Pennsylvania’s Art of the State Public commissions: City of Philadelphia Mural Arts Program “Hanging Garden of I-95” wall mural; Terminal Freezer, Oxnard, CA, ceramic wall mural; and the Museo Jacobo Borges “Bridge of Life” ceramic walkway in Caracas, Venezuela.

Publications: Color in Contemporary Painting, Art of Watercolor, Song of the City, Artist Homes and Studios, Artists of the MidAtlantic, Poet of a Threatened Eden

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