photo: Robert Hale
Birthdate: 1937, Houston, Texas
Inspiration for Edwards comes from his ancestral home, Africa, where he currently spends several months each year working as a sculptor in Senegal. He is a resident of New York City, and is represented by CDS Gallery located on 76 East 19th Street in New York City. He holds a B.F.A. Degree from the University of Southern California and has studied at Los Angeles City College, and the Los Angeles County Art Institute. Besides achieving a prestigious career as a sculptor. Professor Edwards has realized a distinguished 40-year teaching career. In 1964, he began teaching at San Bemadino Valley College. He went on to teach at the Chouinard Art Institute (now the California Institute of Arts), the Orange County Community College in New York, and the University of Connecticut. In 1972 he began teaching at Rutgers University, where he taught classes in sculpture,drawing and Third World artists until his retirement from the school in 2002. Mel Edwards is known for creating sculpture that fuses the political with the abstract as it addresses his African American heritage. Drawing upon African sources as well as the western modernist tradition of welded steel sculpture, Edwards has created a profound and beautiful body of art. He is most well known for his "Lynch Fragments".