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Born near Falling Waters, West Virginia on a plantation a year after the Civil War, and raised in Baltimore, William Leigh became one of the foremost painters of the American West with a career of seventy-five years. Some people referred to him as the "Sagebrush Rembrandt". Trips to the Southwest began in 1906 when he made an agreement with William Simpson, Santa Fe Railway advertising manager, to paint the Grand Canyon in exchange for free transportation West. In 1907, he completed his Grand Canyon painting, which led to many more commissions and an extensive painting trip through Arizona and New Mexico. These travels inspired him to paint western subjects for the next 50 years, but it was not until the 1940s that he received much recognition. He painted in the Southwest nearly every summer between 1912 and 1926 and focused on the Hopi and Navajo Indians. In 1910, he traveled to Wyoming, where he painted in Yellowstone Park and did sketches, many which he later converted into large canvases such as "Lower Falls of the Yellowstone"(1915) and "Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone" (1911). His style was realistic, and his palette invariably had the Southwestern hues of soft pinks, reds, yellows and purples. In fact, his critics who knew little of the Southwest accused him of fabricating the colors. Many of his works are at the Gilcrease Museum in Tulsa, Oklahoma. In March, 1999, the Historical Center of Cody, Wyoming held an exhibition of his field sketches and finished works depicting his experiences near Cody, Wyoming in the early part of the century, between 1910 and 1921. These years, many which he spent painting in the Carter Mountain vicinity, were considered crucial to his artistic development because he was exposed to western landscape. His companion during these travels was Cody taxidermist Will Richard who stirred his interest in wildlife.
Born in Rockford, Illinois on Jan. 1, 1868, Hobart moved to California with his family when he was a small boy. He studied art in San Francisco at the School of Design under Stanton and Cadenasso, and privately with William Keith. He then spent three years at the ASL in NYC under Blum and Bridgman and completed his art training in Paris. The turning point in his career came in 1915 at the PPIE. During the exposition Hobart was awarded a silver medal and received praise from local art critics for his development of color monotype prints. When the Oakland Civic Art Gallery opened in 1916, an entire room was devoted to his monotypes. In that year Hobart left the Monterey Peninsula and established a studio in San Francisco. From his studio came portraits of Carl Oscar Borg, Mrs. Leo Lentelli, and Gottardo Piazzoni. Often compared to Cézanne, he is nationally known for his Impressionist portraits and landscapes. Exhibitions: California Society of Etchers; Del Monte Gallery (Monterey), 1912-13; California Artists, Golden Gate Park Museum, 1915; Panama-Calif. Exposition (San Diego), 1915; Los Angeles County Museum of Art, 1915, 1918; Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, 1915; Kennedy Gallery (NYC), 1916; NY Architectural League, 1916; National Academy of Design, 1916; Calif. Liberty Fair, 1918 (1st prize); San Francisco Art Association, 1918 (prize), 1921 (1st prize), 1922 (gold medal); Western Ass'n of Art Museum Directors, 1922; Bohemian Club, 1922, 1923 (solo), 1929; Golden Gate International Exhibition, 1939; Oakland Museum, 1981. Work in Permanent Collections: San Francisco Museum of Art; CHS; Bohemian Club; De Young Museum; Mills College (Oakland); Oakland Museum; Salinas High School; Nevada Museum (Reno); Monterey Peninsula Museum.
Born in Braunschweig, Germany on Aug. 16, 1839. Schafer may have studied art in Düsseldorf since his paintings resemble those of other Düsseldorf-trained artists; however, he is believed to have been self-taught. He came to the U.S. in 1876 and arrived in San Francisco in 1880. After establishing a studio, he began exhibiting regularly with the local art association and the Mechanics' Institute Fairs. A peripatetic painter, he made regular sketching trips throughout the Northwest including Montana, Wyoming, Colorado, Idaho, Oregon, Washington, British Columbia, and Alaska. During his last years he painted theatrical scenery in San Francisco and Oakland theaters. Schafer had a home in Oakland from 1880 until his death on July 18, 1927. His landscapes, which often include Indians, were mostly done before 1890 and number about 500. Due to alcoholism, his works are often uneven in quality. Exh: Mechanics' Inst. (SF), 1879-84; Calif. State Fair, 1880, 1894. In: Oakland Museum; Seattle Museum; Monterey Peninsula Museum; Shasta State Historical Monument; Bancroft Library (UC Berkeley); CHS; Crocker Museum; Hoover Inst. (Palo Alto); Museum of Church History & Art (Salt Lake City); Society of Calif. Pioneers; Sonoma Co. Museum (Santa Rosa); Yosemite Museum; Alameda Public Library; Craigdarroch Castle (Victoria, B.C.) Source: Edan Hughes, "Artists in California, 1786-1940"
Known for small scale, modernist urban views of New York City, he depicted the city as a jumble of architecture in varying sombre colors in a mood reminiscent of 19th century Romanticism. He had a highly original technique, which was covering a drawing with small dabs of paint and pushing spots of warm and cool color over one another, which dried into a kind of low relief. It took him about a decade, from 1929 to 1939, to arrive at this style and method that seemed right for him. He decided to paint what he saw without consciousness as to style or composition and with spiritual commitment, devoting himself to divinity in nature, separated from the modern world. By the 1960s, he was doing horizontal work in brighter hues that gave the viewer the impression of being swept along a street or urban path.
A landscape painter and printmaker, he was born in San Francisco, California on July 29, 1884. Todhunter was a pupil of John Stanton and Arthur Mathews at the Mark Hopkins Institute, and Gottardo Piazzoni and Frank Van Sloun at the California School of Fine Arts, followed by study at the Art Students League in New York City. He began his career as an illustrator for Overland Monthly and later worked for the San Francisco Chronicle, San Francisco Call, and Washington (DC) Times. He worked in New York as a commercial artist until 1912, when he returned to San Francisco to become art director for the H. K. McCann Company, a job he was to keep until his retirement in 1949. Todhunter's work includes etchings, lithographs, and landscapes of Marin County and the San Francisco Bay area. He died in his native city on February 11, 1963. Member: Bohemian Club; SWA; AAPL; Marin Society of Artists; SFAA; Calif. Society of Etchers. Exh: Bohemian Club, 1922-63; SFAA from 1922; OGlE, 1939; Society for Sanity in Art, 1940s.