Abstract Expressionist Al Newbill (American,1921-2011) was raised in Detroit, where he attended the prestigious magnet school Cass Technical High School, and took classes at the Detroit Institute of Arts Museum. After serving in the Army Air Corps during World War II, Newbill headed for New York where he studied at the Brooklyn Museum of Art, Hans Hofmann School of Fine Art, and the New School of Social Research.
He remained in New York for fifteen years amid the exciting atmosphere generated by the Abstract Expressionists and their circle of collectors and dealers. In 1957, Newbill showed at the New York Artists’ 6th Annual Exhibition alongside contemporaries Robert Motherwell, Willem de Kooning and Hans Hoffman. Two years later, Newbill exhibited at Leo Castelli gallery in New York City.
"Art should make the insignificant significant, the familiar unfamiliar, and the usual unusual."
After fifteen years in New York City, Newbill turned to teaching, taking various positions around the United States, including those at Cornell University and University of California, Berkley. He then became the director of the art program for the Rodman Job Corp in New Bedford Massachusetts. He finally moved to the regional campus of Ohio State University in Mansfield where he taught until his retirement in 1976.
His work has been exhibited widely at prestigious institutions and galleries across the United States and remains in the permanent collection of many.