Inscribed at bottom center: Yak
Ex. Coll: Acquired directly from the artist 2018
Parker has illustrated over fifty children’s books and a number of alphabets. Y is for this noble, wooly yak. With deft strokes the artist imbues this yak with bulk, dignity and a sympathetic personality.
Even at 92, Robert Andrew Parker’s eyes twinkle. He is lively, engaged and filled with stories about his life and his art. Aristotle posited that “art imitates life”. Parker’s wonderful drawings and illustrations mirror his personality and passions. This coupled with the artist’s fine technique, exceptional color sense and feeling for composition are the reason his reputation as artist and illustrator are legendary. Parker was born in Norfolk, Virginia in 1927 but he moved a great deal as a child; mainly in the mid-West. Diagnosed with TB at age ten, the entire Parker family moved to New Mexico so he could convalesce and recover. While bed-ridden Parker began to draw. He has never stopped.
From 1948-1952 Parker studied at the School of The Art Institute of Chicago. 1952 marked the year the artist moved to New York City and was included in the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Exhibition of Watercolors, Drawings and Prints, a show that featured greats John Marin, Stuart Davis and Jackson Pollock. A one-man show at Roku Gallery in 1954 launched his career in a big way.
Over the course of his long career Parker has illustrated for Fortune Magazine, The New Yorker and Sports Illustrated. Parker has illustrated more than 50 books, many of the children’s books, including Grandfather Tang’s Story, Action Jackson about Jackson Pollock and Sleds on Boston. He illustrated the very successful Modern Library edition of Stendhal’s Charter house of Parma. Parker’s work has been exhibited and collected by The Art Institute of Chicago, MOMA, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Morgan Library and the Whitney Museum of Art.