Vernon Fisher

Installation Images

Selected Works

Vernon Fisher
Savage Youth, 2020
Acrylic on canvas
84h x 84w inches
Vernon Fisher
Detective, 2020
Acrylic on canvas
90h x 92w inches
Vernon Fisher
Girlfriend Jan, 1999
Oil and acrylic on canvas
81h x 90w x 2 1/4d inches
Vernon Fisher
Who Am I, 2020
Acrylic on canvas
73h x 83w x 1 1/2d inches


Vernon Fisher (1943 – 2023) was born in Fort Worth, Texas. He received a BA in English literature from Hardin-Simmons University in 1967 and an MFA from the University of Illinois in 1969. Fisher’s artistic career began in the 1970s, influenced by the beginnings of postmodern theory. His appropriation of referents from vernacular architecture and pop culture reveal the influence of artists like John Baldessari and Ed Ruscha. Fisher used a wide range of media to create large-scale paintings and installations that imply complex visual narratives. He is known for his blackboard paintings, which employ a slate-gray ground reminiscent of a chalkboard’s layered patina. The associations of erased texts and banal classroom moments complement the representational fragments, symbols, and texts that occupy the foreground of these works.

Fisher has had solo exhibitions in venues across the United States, including at the Museum of Modern Art in New York; the Contemporary Arts Museum in Houston; the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago; the Hirshhorn Museum, Washington, D.C.; the Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo; and the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth.

The artist’s works are included in the permanent collections of more than 40 museums across the globe, such as the Art Institute of Chicago; the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; the Museum of Modern Art, New York; the Phoenix Art Museum; the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; and the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York.

Additionally, Fisher has received many prestigious awards and fellowships, including the John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship in 1995; the National Endowment for the Arts Individual Artist’s Fellowship in 1974, 1980, and 1981. His work was supported by the Louis Comfort Tiffany Foundation in 1984, and he held the title of Regents Professor of Art Emeritus at the University of North Texas in Denton for nearly 30 years. In 1992, Fisher received the Distinguished Teacher of Art Award from the College Art Association. 


On-site and Individual Works

Vernon Fisher

Waiting for the Barbarians
Talley Dunn Gallery
July 31 – September 18, 2021

Vernon Fisher

Dark Waves Rising
Talley Dunn Gallery
October 25 – December 1, 2019

Vernon Fisher

The American Landscape
Talley Dunn Gallery
January 21 – March 11, 2017


Vernon Fisher

Words and Pictures
Wichita Falls Museum of Art at Midwestern State University Texas
March 21 – May 30, 2020

Vernon Fisher

Words and Pictures: Vernon Fisher, 1980 – 2019
University of North Texas Art Gallery
October 8, 2019 – December 7, 2019

Vernon Fisher

The Art of Found Objects: Enigma Variations
Art Museum of Southeast Texas
December 14, 2018 – March 3, 2019

Vernon Fisher

Vernon Fisher: K-Mart Conceptualism
Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth
September 25, 2010 – January 2, 2011




“Filmmaker Michael Flanagan Debuts Documentary on Vernon Fisher in North Texas”
by Jessica Fuentes
April 15, 2023


“Vernon Fisher: In Pursuit of the Frivolous and the Tragic” 
by Jerome Weeks
August 11, 2016

Patron Magazine

“Inside Vernon Fisher’s Studio”
by Patricia Mora
June 1, 2015


“Interview with Vernon Fisher” 
by Christina Patoski
December 4, 2010

Fort Worth Weekly

“How Vernon Fisher Came to K-Mart Conceptualism”
by Anthony Mariani
October 27, 2010