(1884 – 1980)
Born in Russia in 1884, Joseph Garlock immigrated to the United States in 1904. He settled in the lower east side of New York and later moved his family to Bloomfield, New Jersey, where Garlock worked as a cobbler, opened a fruit and vegetable market and also operated a single vehicle bus line that ran along Bloomfield Avenue into the center of Newark. Garlock received no formal training in art and did not begin painting and sculpting until his retirement in 1949 at age 65.
Referring to his art as his “hobby” Garlock spent 15 years creating hundreds of paintings, wood carvings and assemblages using whatever materials were available, including lumber, box tops, awning fabric, tree branches and tin cans. Oddly, Garlock signed and dated each piece he created. His first painting was done on a tin pie plate and depicted the Woodstock, NY weekend cabin belonging to his daughter Rose. He stopped creating art in 1965 due to old age and palsy. In 2000, five years after Rose’s death, the Garlock family discovered hundreds of pieces of their grandfather’s artwork that she had stored in a woodshed on her country property.
Since 2001 the James Cox Gallery at Woodstock has represented Garlock’s work. The artist has garnered regional, national and even international media attention and is now represented by some of the finest folk and outsider art galleries in the United States. The Museum of American Folk Art houses Garlock’s work in its permanent collection. James Cox is presently working on an audiovisual presentation that will be used in future exhibitions. A book on the artist is also in preparation with the major essay written by Lyle Rexer.
Click HERE to view full Exhibition Catalog “Joseph Garlock Paintings and Sculpture” The Cecille R. Hunt Gallery, Webster University, St. Louis, MO. October 11 – November 7, 2003.
Click HERE to view Exhibition Brochure “Joseph Garlock: An Immigrant’s Gift to America.” James Cox Gallery, Woodstock, NY. 2015.