Brought to New York City in 1850, William Keith was apprenticed to a wood engraver in 1856 working for "Harper’s" magazine. In 1858 (or 1859) he visited California for "Harper’s" and then after a trip to Great Britain, settled in California as an engraver in 1862. He began exhibiting paintings in 1864 in San Francisco where he opened his studio, after having been taught painting by his wife. The Northern Pacific Railroad commissioned him to do landscape paintings along its route about 1868. In 1869-70 he studied in Dusseldorf, Germany; in 1871-72, he shared a studio in Boston with William Hahn; and in 1872, he returned to California. A nature lover, he found there was “scarcely a mountain in three-fourths of California where he had not kept vigil for days as a time, studying every detail of color, flower, rock, forge, shadow, and sunshine.” Keith became Thomas Hill’s rival in monumental landscapes, saying, “I’d be satisfied if I could reach the power and success of Tom Hill.” When George Inness visited California in 1890, he worked in Keith’s studio for many weeks, and they made sketching trips together. The result for Keith was an influenced style reflecting the subjective rather than the spectacular. His "Majesty of the Oaks" painting sold at auction in New York City in 1903 for $2,300., and about the same time "Glory of the Heaven" sold at auction in San Francisco for $12,000. Of medium height with unruly curly hair, Keith had his studio next to the live oaks on the Berkeley campus where it was the center of the university-oriented California culture. The 1906 earthquake and fire destroyed 2,000 of Keith’s works.
Born in Taunton, England on Nov. 24, 1877. Moore studied at the Liverpool Art School and Royal Institute. In 1903 he immigrated to America and further studied with Henry Ward Ranger. By 1910 he was an established artist in NYC; in that year moved to Hawaii where he was purchasing agent for Hawaii Plantations and later served as director of the Honolulu Academy of Arts. In 1928 he sailed for California and worked briefly in Pasadena where he painted the Picture Bridge, a series of 41 murals in the Huntington Hotel. After a few months in San Francisco, he settled on the Monterey Peninsula. There he specialized in poetic depictions of the coast and other local scenery. Moore died in Carmel, CA on March 5, 1967. Member: Salmagundi Club; NY WC Club; AFA; Pasadena Society of Artists. Exh: Calif. WC Society, 1928; Nicholson Gallery (Pasadena), 1928; CGA; PAFA; St Louis Museum; GGIE, 1939; LACMA, 1942; Salmagundi Club, 1943; Santa Cruz, 1944; Society for Sanity in Art, CPLH, 1944 (1st prize and Logan medal); Carmel AA, 1945-46; NAD. In: Orange Co. (CA) Museum; USMC Headquarters (SF); Auckland (NZ) Museum; Honolulu Academy of Art. Source: Edan Hughes, "Artists in California, 1786-1940"
Helen Glieforst Impressionist Landscape Born in Crete, Nebraska on February 10, 1903, Helen Gleiforst moved with her family shortly thereafter to San Diego, California. In 1918 her family relocated to Eugene, Oregon, and in 1920 Helen attended the University of Oregon. Because of her father's health, the family returned to Southern California. She married realtor Fred Gleiforst in 1923 and settled in Beverly Hills. It was in the late 1920s that she began to paint and draw. Her teachers included Nicolai Fechin, George Melcher, and John Hubbard Rich. Her instruction with Dedrick Stuber influenced her landscapes and Nell Walker Warner influenced her floral paintings. By the mid-1930s she had established a local reputation as an artist. She became a frequent exhibitor at one man shows in local venues. In the 1950s she had an exhibit at Stanford University. With her husband's retirement in 1960 she began to travel throughout California where she painted many of her landscapes. She stopped her artistic work in the 1980s because of poor health. The full extent of her output became evident after her death when an heir discovered over 500 paintings stored in her home. These works show the strong impressionistic expression of her work that was characteristic of the early plein-air painters of California. Gleiforst died in Los Angeles, California on May 28, 1997. Exhibited: Ebell Society; Beverly Hills & Westwood Women's Clubs; Clearwater Jr. High School, 1936.