A student of commercial art, he spent several years as a professional cartoonist at the Walt Disney Studios and elsewhere before moving on to teach art. Thibaud's knowledge of and respect for commercial illustration greatly informed his subsequent work, which is marked by its formal geometric order and clearly defined forms. After briefly working in the dominant abstract expressionist style, Thibaud settled on realism as his primary mode of expression in the mid-1950s.
In the 1960's Thibaud received his Master's from Sacramento State and later became an assistant Professor at the University of California, Davis-where he would remain through the 1970s. It was during his tenure at UC Davis when he created some of his most iconic works.
In 1963, Thibaud turned increasingly to figure and landscape painting. Beginning in the 1970s, he began painting San Francisco cityscapes, wildly distorted views of the city's streets and hillsides that are reminiscent not only of Richard Diebenkorn's cityscapes from the mid-sixties but also the Precisionist paintings of Charles Sheeler and Georgia O'Keefe. His most recent landscapes dating from the mid-1990s share many of the same spatial and planar distortions seen in the cityscapes but utilize hotter color and flattened planes to create the imagery (Wayne Thibaud: 70 years).
Although he has been frequently associated with Pop Art due to his choice of subject matter, Thibaud does not consid ...