Joel Babb graduated in Art History from Princeton in 1969, studied with George Segal and George Ortman and spent a year in Munich and Rome before going to Boston to get an MFA from the Museum School and Tufts.  There his style changed from abstraction to a contemporary realism.  His cityscapes are the works for which he is best known in Boston. Some are street level panoramas like the large View of Harvard Square in the Charles Hotel, Cambridge. Others are panoramas from a high prospect like the View from the Roof of 500 Boylston for Mass Financial, or the View from the Financial District at Standish, Ayer and Wood, or the View of Cincinnati done for Gradison Investments.  All of the panoramas play with problems of flattening a wide angled space into a picture plane.

In 1984 he began a series of aerial views based on photos he took from a helicopter over Boston.  These are often experimental perspectives like the one point perspective straight down of Copley Plunge or the View of Back Bay at Harvard Business School and the two paintings for Fidelity. Copley Plunge is in the collection of the Boston Museum of Fine Arts.

In the mid 1970’s he began building a studio and residence in Sumner, Maine which soon became a full time residence. Though he continued to paint cityscapes in the late 1980’s he began a series of large landscapes of the woods near his studio. One is The Hounds of Spring which hangs in Baker Library at Harvard Business School.

In 1996 he finished the painting recreating the first successful organ transplant in man which hangs in the Countway Library at Harvard Medical School, working with the doctors who achieved this important medical innovation. In 2015 he painted a picture of the first successful full face transplant in America for the surgeons at the Brigham and Women’s who accomplished this.

He has had three  solo shows at Vose Galleries and been in shows at Naga in Boston, Sherry French, Gerold Wunderlich, The National Academy in New York City, Center for Maine Contemporary Art, Portland Museum of Art, the Ogunquit Museum and Frost Gully Gallery  in Maine, the Arnot Art Museum, The Naples Museum of Art, Trudy Labell Fine Arts in Florida, and Greenhut gallleries in Portland, and many other galleries and museums.




Vose Galleries, Boston, MA, “Water as Muse: Reflections, Refractions, and Flow, ” October 7–November 4, 2017

Vose Galleries, Boston, MA, “Crosscurrents: The Clubs and Schools that Established Impressionism in America,” October 29, 2016–Jan 28, 2017

Vose Galleries, Boston, MA: :Contemporary: At Home and Afield”, August 6–September 24, 2016

Greenhut Galleries, Portland, ME, “The Nature of Things,” October 6–October 29, 2016

Thos. Moser Gallery, Freeport, ME, “The Best of Maine Contemporary Art,” June 17–October 12, 2015

Vose Galleries, Boston, MA,”Lyric Suite: An Easel in the Landscape, New Works by Joel Babb” October 9-November 17, 2012

Vose Galleries, Boston, MA
“Joel Babb: Enlightened Perspectives”
October 1 – November 21, 2009

Naples Museum of Art, Naples, FL
“People, Places & Things: The Art of Ben Aronson, Joel Babb, and Alec Soth” February 2 – April 25, 2010

Bates College Museum of Art, Lewiston, ME
“Joel Babb: The Process Revealed”
October 10, 2009 – March 27, 2010

Vose Galleries, Boston, MA
“Illuminated: Boston, Maine and Rome”
April 29 – June 17, 2006

Vose Galleries, Boston, MA
“Realism Now: Traditions and Departures”
November 22, 2003 – January 3, 2004

Center for Maine Contemporary Art, Rockland, ME
“Maine Seen”
October 25 – December 21, 2003

Bates College Museum of Art, Lewiston, ME
“Intimate Wilderness: Maine Landscapes of Joel Babb”
October 25 – December 29, 2002

Arnot Art Museum
“Re-presenting Representation”
October 19, 2001 – February 24, 2002

DeCordova Museum, Lincoln MA
“Landscapes Seen and Imagined: Sense of Place”
July 28, 2001

Bates College Museum of Art
“Eloquent Objects”
The Sense and Sensibilities of Still-Life Painting
June 9- August 25, 2000

Davenport Museum of Art
“Green Woods and Crystal Waters”
The American Landscape Tradition
April 16- June 24, 2000

John and Mabel Ringling Museum
“Green Woods and Crystal Waters”
The American Landscape Tradition
January 14- March 19, 2000

Philbrook Museum of Art
“Green Woods and Crystal Waters”
The American Landscape Tradition
September 12- November 7, 1999

Round Top Centerfor the Arts
“Ten Artists”
May 28 – June 28, 1999

Bates College Museum of Art
“Carried Away: The Joy of Collecting Art in Maine”
June 11 – August 8, 1999

L.C. Bates Museum”Looking at Katahdin: The Artists’ Inspiration”
June 13 – October 12, 1999

Bates College Museum of Art
“Notations of Color: Oil Sketching in Maine”
August 28 – October 30, 1998

Oqunquit Art Museum
“Realism in 20th Century American Painting”
August 18 – September 30, 1997




Harvard Medical School – Countway Library – Boston,
Unveiling of “The First Successful Kidney Transplant”
December 20, 1996

Frost Gully Gallery – Portland, ME
“30th Anniversary”
June 28 – July 17, 1996

Gerold Wunderlich and Co. – New York
“The Urban Landscape”
April 4 – April 29, 1995

Sherry French Gallery – New York
“EXPEDITION: Beaches, seashores and Coastlines – USA”
December 28, 1994 – January 28, 1995

Portland Museum of Art – Portland, ME
“An Eye for Maine, Paintings from a Private Collection”
November 1994 – January 1995

Sherry French Gallery – New York City
“Maine and Other Remote Areas”
September 8 – October 2, 1994

J.S.Ames Fine Arts – Belfast, ME
“Four Maine Realist Painters”
August 5 – 29, 1994

National Academy of Design – New York City
“169th Annual Exhibition”
March 10 – April 3, 1994

Francesca Anderson Fine Art – Lexington, MA
“Scenes of Boston”
February 26 – April 3, 1994

USArtists ’93 – Trudy Labell Fine Art – Philadelphia, PA
“Native to Neon”
December 2 – 5, 1993

Barn Gallery – Ogunquit, ME
“Night Light”
July 15 – August 22, 1993

Portland Museum of Art – Portland, ME
“On the Edge: Forty Years of Maine Painting”
February 19 – April 18, 1993

The Reed Art Gallery – U. of Maine, Presque Isle, ME
“On the Edge: Forty Years of Maine Painting”
October 3 – December 20, 1992

Maine Coast Artists – Rockport, ME
“On the Edge: Forty Years of Maine Painting”
August 15 – September 27, 1992

Gallery on the Green – Lexington,MA
“Joel Babb: New Paintings”
October 17 – November 23, 1991

The Contemporary Arts Center – Cincinnati, OH
“Cincinnati Collects: The Corporate View”
September 13 – November 2, 1991

Hobe Sound Gallery – Brunswick, ME
“Joel Babb – Barbara Sussman – Rush Brown”
August 21 – September 28, 1991

The Art Complex Museum – Duxbury,MA
“Joel Babb: Perspectives”
January 25, March 17, 1991

Trudy Labell FineArt – Rehoboth, MA
“Fall Preview”
October 1990

St. Botoloph Club – Boston, MA
“Joel Babb: Paintings of Cityscapes”
June 13 – September 10, 1990

Hobe Sound Gallery – Brunswick,ME
June – July, 1990

Gallery on the Green – Lexington,MA
“The Gallery Stars”
November 30 – December 31, 1989

Fitchburg Art Museum – Fitchburg,MA
“Monocular Vision: New England Realist Artists”
May 21 – September 10, 1989

Gallery on the Green – Lexington,MA
“Paintings by Joel Babb”
January 21 – February 27, 1988

Treat Gallery – Bates College – Lewiston, ME
“Joel Babb: Landscapes”
November 9 – December 14, 1984




Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

American Finance Group – Boston, MA

Arthur AndersonBoston, MA

Atlantic Mutual – Madison, NJ

Bank of Boston – Boston, MA

Bates College – Lewiston, ME

Bostongas – Boston, MA

Brown Brothers Harriman – Boston, MA

Cambridge Savings Bank – Cambridge, M

The Charles Hotel – Cambridge, MA

Copley Advisors – Boston, MA

DeCordova Museum – Lincoln, MA

Dynatech Corporation – Burlington, MA

Fidelity – Boston, MA

FDIC – Boston, MA

Fleet Bank – Providence, RI

Fogg Art Museum – Cambridge, MA

Gradison Financial Services – Cincinnati, OH

Hale and Dorr – Boston, MA

Harvard Business School – Baker Library

Harvard Medical School – Countway Library

IBM – Boston, MA

Mass Financial Services – Boston, MA

Marriott Hotel – Crystal City, VA

Motorola Semiconductor – Burlington, MA

New England Life – Boston, MA

New England Telephone – Boston, MA

Partners Healthcare – Boston, MA

Peabody and Arnold – Boston, MA

Peabody and Brown – Boston, MA

Putnam Companies – Boston, MA

R.M.Bradley – Boston, MA

Shearson American Express – Boston, MA

Standish Ayer and Wood – Boston, MA

Teradyne Inc.- Boston, MA

Tufts New England Medical Center – Boston, MA

Wellington Management – Boston, MA

Westin Hotel – Copley Place – Boston, MA

Private Collections