Willie Young began working as a shoe-shiner, a trade he continued until 2015 at Griffin Barber Stylist in Farmer’s Branch, a suburb outside of Dallas. It was in this barbershop that Young refined his drawing skills in between shoeshines. Dianne Solis, writing about Young in the Dallas Morning News in 2009, described his unconventional studio: “The tools of his twin trades spill near his patched black leather chair. Camel-hair brushes and waxy tins wait to buff scuffs on boots and brogues. Look closer and see lean, green graphite pencils, and a magnifying glass for detail…: ‘This is where I do my best work, Young says.’ ”
In 2008 Tanner|Hill Gallery began representing Willie Young, and featured his drawings in numerous exhibitions as well as at art fairs throughout the United States, including at the Works on Paper at the Park Avenue Armory in New York in 2009, Art Chicago in 2011 and Art San Francisco in 2012. In 2016 his work was featured in a solo exhibition at Tanner|Hill Gallery at the Outsider Art Fair in New York as well as in Paris.
News and Notes
Artwork by Willie Young will be featured at the Baker Museum in Naples Florida. The museum hosts the third installation of Inside the Outside: Five Self-Taught Artists from the William Louis-Dreyfus Foundation from March 28 through July 23.
Tanner | Hill Gallery is pleased to offer an assortment of Willie Young's drawings online for viewing. Private appointments are available to patrons who wish to view a more extensive assortment of the collection. Contact Tanner Hill Gallery for more information.