George Bireline

Born in Peoria, Illinois, in 1923, George Bireline became a central—and beloved—figure among North Carolina’s artists and arts appreciators. Though he rose to national prominence with his color-field paintings in the 1960s, Bireline chose to remain in his adopted state, teaching at the School of Design at North Carolina State University in Raleigh and creating a varied body of work during a lengthy and influential career. Over the decades Bireline moved from style to style—from Abstract Expressionism to color-field painting, from trompe l’oeil to social commentary to more personal, figurative works—always with an admirable coherence and facility. Throughout, Bireline teased viewers by using—and confusing-representation and abstraction, reality and illusion.

Image Courtesy of Allen Weiss