Both my parents were/are fine artists and arts educators. Nancy, my mother, was an art history slide librarian (at Stanford) and an artist in the tradition of Judy Chicago. Gardiner McCauley, my father, is from the abstract expressionist group of artists that came out of the San Francisco Bay Area in the 50s, a painter, teacher and arts administrator.
They always encouraged us kids to draw and make art from day one. Although really talented, my sister Caitlin (born in Heidelberg btw!) was the rebel â€“ she didn't want to be an artist.
My older brother Kevin was a young star in town (we lived in Columbia, Missouri in the 70s), he was an accomplished artist as a young boy and painted murals downtown and stuff. He was also a big Dungeons & Dragons guy, so he made Conan comics and paintings of wizards and Star Trek and historical figuresâ€¦he was a nerd. The mayor lived on our block, so Kevin and I painted political signage and stuff for him. Kevin passed away at 19 from cancer, otherwise I'd wager he'd have gone on to be a big star.
I eventually went to Parsons in NYC and much to my mother's chagrin majored in illustration. She wanted me to be a fine artist! She passed away before my career took off, she did worry about my future back then. But that's what mothers do…
An interview with painter and illustrator Adam McCauley. Read the complete interview here.