Craig Kauffman studied architecture at the University of Southern California and art at the University of California, Los Angeles, completing his MA in 1956. Initially an abstract painter, he was a regular exhibitor at the Ferus Gallery, Los Angeles. In 1964, he began experimenting with plastics using vacuum-forming technologies to create objects that were painted to appear ephemeral as they modulated the light around them.
The Museum recently displayed one of Kauffman's bubble pieces in Collecting California. Noted for their sensual colors and shapes, Kauffman’s bubbles in particular evade principles of conventional painting and sculpture. Aside from there being no brushstroke, the surface of the bubble is slick plastic. The bubble itself sits out from the wall in high relief, placing it more in the realm of an object than a painting, and despite its horizontal orientation, its bulging lozenge shape frustrates attempts to identify any traditional figure ground relationship.
Gallery owner and close friend of Craig Kauffman, Frank Lloyd, wrote a touching and heart-felt remembrance of the artist's life and accomplishments. Read the full article.
Craig Kauffman, Untitled, 1968, acrylic and lacquer on vacuum-formed Plexiglas. Laguna Art Museum collection.