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John Kearney (August 31, 1924 – August 10, 2014[1]) was a Chicago- and Provincetown-based American artist famous for making figurative sculptures, often of animals, using multiple, found metal objects, specifically bumpers from automobiles.



Moose, Chicago, Illinois, USA

Kearney received his artistic education at the Cranbrook Academy of Art in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, and the Universita per Stranieri in Perugia, Italy. In 1950, he co-founded the Contemporary Art Workshop in Chicago. Subsequently, he has lived and worked in Italy many times, most notably in Rome in 1963 and 1964 while on a Fulbright Award and again in 1985 and 1992 while serving as a visiting artist at the American Academy in Rome.

Kearney learned his welding skills as a World War II U.S. Navy sailor while performing underwater repair of naval vessels.[2]


  • Fulbright Award to Rome in 1963–64
  • Italian Government Grant in 1963–64
  • Visiting Artists at America Academy in Rome, 1985 and 1992

Collections that own Kearney's workEdit

  • Aon (Standard Oil Building) in Chicago
  • Detroit Children's Museum
  • Illinois State Capitol Visitors Center, Springfield, Illinois
  • Springfield Art Association, Springfield, Illinois
  • Mitchell Museum, Mt. Vernon, Illinois
  • Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago
  • Ulrich Museum, Wichita, Kansas
  • Rockford Art Museum, Rockford, Illinois
  • Canton Museum of Art, Canton, Ohio

Solo exhibitionsEdit

  • New York City at A.C.A. Gallery, 1964 to 1979
  • Berta Walker Gallery, Provincetown, Massachusetts, 1992 to 1997

Outdoor sculptureEdit

In Chicago area



  1. ^ "John Kearney Obituary". Cremation Society of Illinois. Retrieved November 7, 2014.
  2. ^ Descriptive plaque on Moose (W-02-03)
  3. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on August 18, 2005. Retrieved July 1, 2006.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)

External linksEdit