Whiting Tennis was born in Hampton, Virginia in 1959 and was raised in Buffalo and Seattle, the third of four children of an Episcopalian minister. He received his BFA in painting at the University of Washington, and after a series of solo shows in Seattle, moved to New York. Between 1990 and 2004 he lived, worked, and exhibited in Manhattan; and had his first show with the Derek Eller Gallery in September 2001. Upon returning to Seattle he was invited to join the Greg Kucera stable and has been living and working there for the last five years. His paintings, sculpture, and drawings are part of many collections including those of several major Northwest museums. He is currently working towards an exhibition at the Tang Museum in Saratoga Springs, NY.
Artists representing some of the most innovative and influential work being done today come to lecture at the University of Oregon. The Department of Art brings in about a dozen artists and critics each year from across the nation and abroad to lecture and meet with students in small groups or individual studio visits. In addition to the support each media area has for such an enterprise, the two annual endowed lectures, the George & Matilde Fowler lecture and the Davis Family Lecture, bring in particularly high-profile artists and critics who challenge our assumptions about art and have broad relevance across media. These public lectures provide not only a unique opportunity to hear directly from artists about their work, but also for students to work with them directly in a more intimate capacity.