Joseph Fiore, “#7-54 The Gathering,” 1954. Oil on canvas. Collection of Matt Chambers and John Cram.
Joseph Fiore, “Ducks on Lake Eden,” 1947. Oil on cardboard. Collection of Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center. Gift of Janet Heling Roberts.
Joseph Fiore (b. 1925 Cleveland, OH; d. 2008 New York, NY)
Joseph Fiore had a long and deep connection with Black Mountain College. As a twelve year resident – first a student, then a teacher – his presence in the community outlasted most. Originally from Ohio, Fiore enrolled at Black Mountain College for the Summer Session of 1946, the summer that Josef Albers invited Jacob Lawrence to teach painting at BMC. Over the next three years, Fiore also studied with Ilya Bolotowsky, Willem de Kooning, and Jean Varda. In 1949, after Josef and Anni Albers’ departure, Joe was invited to join the faculty, and he taught painting and drawing until 1956 when the college ceased operations.
After BMC closed, Joe and his wife Mary, whom he met and married at Black Mountain, moved to New York City. There he became involved with the 10th Street Art Scene of the late 1950s and 1960s – a group of galleries that showed the work of young artists on the rise. Eventually he resumed his teaching career at The Philadelphia College of Art, The Maryland Institute College of Art and the National Academy. In May of 2001, Joseph Fiore was awarded the Andrew Carnegie Prize at the National Academy of Design in New York.