Ray Yoshida (1930–2009) taught at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago for nearly four decades and had an indelible influence on generations of artists, including the Chicago Imagists. With his guidance, students learned to look beyond the confines of Western art, to explore source material that would propel their work into something unique to their experience. Whether it involved examining form in the array of African masks at The Field Museum, contemplating color in the weird and wonderful treasures at Maxwell Street Market, or understanding line in the works of self-taught artist Joseph Yoakum, Yoshida’s idea was to instinctively follow the eye to whatever ignited artistic sensibilities.


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