Saint Louis University

Cosmic Tears logo
September 13 - December 13, 2009
     Thanksgiving hours:
   closed Thursday, November 26 - Sunday, November 29
     free public 
     opening reception
Sunday, September 13, 1:30-3:30 p.m.
          the artist is unable to be present at this event
          click here for special parking options for the opening reception
     Artist's talkSunday, November 15, 2:00 p.m.
          Michael Byron gives a talk titled, "Cosmic Tears: Word and Image"
          followed by a reception for Mr. Byron
          click here for more information about the talk

General Exhibition Information
Hours: Tues - Sun, 11 am - 4 pm
Admission: free, with suggested donation of $5/adults, $1/students and children

   Special parking options for the opening reception on September 13
   Directions and Parking information
   Group visit information

Byron - Cosmic Tears 12 

Michael Byron, Cosmic Tears 12, 2003.
Mixed media on paper.
Courtesy of the artist.
Art shaping Meaning
In the evocative paintings of the Cosmic Tears series, Michael Byron explores the relationship of the individual to the universal. The works are based on a text by the artist that meditates on the inevitable mix of emotions that accompanies the act of creation; pain and joy together elicit a "cosmic tear" that is the "womb of our psyche." Yet the paintings themselves attest to the potential of art to "shape that tear into Meaning." The abstract works simultaneously suggest both microcosmic and macrocosmic perspectives, and evince a quiet, reflective quality. In some of the works there are forms that suggest continents or constellations; in others, the artist introduces trompe l'oeil images of water droplets that bring to mind the opening lines of William Blake's "Auguries of Innocence":

To see a World in a Grain of Sand,
And a Heaven in a Wild Flower,
Hold Infinity in the palm of your hand,
And Eternity in an hour.
About the artist
Mr. Byron is Professor of Painting at the Sam Fox School of Design and Visual Arts at Washington University in St. Louis. In his distinguished career he has exhibited throughout the United States, as well as in the Netherlands, Sweden, Finland, France, Germany, Spain, and Mexico. He was selected for the 1989 Whitney Biennial. His work is included in many public collections including the Saint Louis Art Museum, the Museum of Modern Art (New York), the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Museum Boymans-van Beuningen (Rotterdam), and the Tamayo Museum (Mexico City).
MOCRA thanks the artist and Philip Slein Gallery, St. Louis, for their kind assistance in assembling this exhibition.

Additional links

Michael Byron and MOCRA Director Terrence Dempsey, S.J., on the "Saint Louis Art Map: On the Air" podcast

Michael Byron portfolio

Michael Byron at Philip Slein Gallery

Reviews of Cosmic Tears

Reviews of other Michael Byron exhibitions
(scroll almost to the bottom and look for the heading "The Outlaw Printmakers and Michael Byron")

Byron - Cosmic Tears  

Michael Byron, Cosmic Tears "C", 2009.
Mixed media on canvas.
Courtesy of the artist.