Biography, Carl Oscar Borg, N.A. (American, Born Sweden 1879-1947) Carl Oscar Borg was considered "a major American artist," though he was born in Grinstad, Sweden on March 3, 1879. Borg worked as a seaman and studied art in London before emigrating to New York City in 1902. He moved to California in 1903 and through the patronage of Mrs. Phoebe Hearst, was able to return to Europe for further study in Paris and Rome. Upon his return he taught at the California Art Institute in Los Angeles, and from 1918 to 1924 lived in Santa Barbara where he taught at the School of Arts. The interval years 1924 to 1935 were spent traveling to San Francisco, Los Angeles and the Grand Canyon. The subjects of his paintings included Hopi and Navajo Indians, cowboys, historical scenes, and California landscapes, seascapes and missions. He made three trips to Sweden in the 1930s, and when war broke out in Europe he was forced to remain there for the duration of the war. While in Sweden he had considerable fame and financial success in selling his paintings of Indians and desert scenes to art collectors. After World War II ended, he returned to Santa Barbara where he died on May 8, 1947. Awards: gold medal, St. Louis Exposition, 1904; first prize, Los Angeles Painters Club, 1909; silver medal, Versailles, 1914; first prize, California Art Club, 1915; silver medal, PPIE, 1915; gold and silver medals, Panama-California Exposition, San Diego, 1915; silver medal, Societe des Artistes Francais, 1920; silver medal, Pacific Southwest Exposition, 1928; and others. Major collectors: Los Angeles County Museum of Art; Montclair Art Museum, New Jersey; California State Library; Seattle Art Museum; Library of Congress; de Young Museum; Lowie Museum, University of California, Berkeley; Mills College, Oakland; Oakland Museum; Los Angeles Public Library; Santa Barbara Museum; National Museum of American Art; Bibliotheque Nationale, Paris; Henry Art Gallery, University of Washington, Seattle; Gothenburg Ethological Museum, Sweden; Phoenix Museum
Richard Parkes Bonington was born in the town of Arnold, 4 miles from Nottingham in England. His father was successively a gaoler, a drawing master and lace-maker, and his mother a teacher. Bonington learned watercolour painting from his father and exhibited paintings at the Liverpool Academy at age 11. In 1817, Bonington's family moved to Calais, France where his father had set up a lace factory. At this time, Bonington started taking lessons from the painter François Louis Thomas Francia, who trained him in English watercolour painting. In 1818, the family moved to Paris to open a lace retail outlet. It was Paris where he first met Eugène Delacroix, who he became friends with. He worked for a time producing copies of Dutch and Flemish landscapes in the Louvre. In 1820, he started attending the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris, where he studied under Antoine-Jean, Baron Gros. It was around this time that Bonington started going on sketching tours in the suburbs of Paris and the surrounding countryside. His first paintings were exhibited at the Paris Salon in 1822. He also began to work in lithography, illustrating Baron Taylor’s "Voyages pittoresques dans l'ancienne France" and his own architectural series Restes et Fragmens". In 1824, he won a gold medal at the Paris Salon along with John Constable and Anthony Vandyke Copley Fielding. Bonington died of tuberculosis on 23 September 1828 at 29 Tottenham Street in London, only 25 years old.
A prominent landscape and marine painter, Jules Eugène Pages spent most of his career in France where he was a well-known Impressionist painter, but he maintained close ties to his native city of San Francisco and was influential in introducing that painting style to Northern California. He was born in San Francisco, California on May 16, 1867 and was raised in the artistic milieu of his father's engraving business, where he worked as an apprentice. In 1888 he sailed to Paris to study at Academie Julian under Jules Lefebvre, Benjamin Constant, and Fleury. After returning to San Francisco, he worked as an illustrator for the Examiner and Call newspapers. Upon returning to Paris in 1902, he began teaching night classes at the Academie Julian and served as its director. Pages gained international recognition while in France and was made a Chevalier of the Legion of Honor in 1910. In 1915 he exhibited at the Panama Pacific International Exposition and was a member of the International Jury of Awards. Although he remained in France for forty years, he returned to his native city often to visit and exhibit. At the outbreak of World War II, Pages returned to San Francisco and died there on May 22, 1946. He was a member of the Bohemian Club; International Society of Sculptors & Painters in Paris. He exhibited at the Paris Salon, 1895 with honorable mention, and won Gold Medals there in 1899 and 1905. He also exhibited at the Steckel Gallery in Los Angeles in 1909; at the Bohemian Club, 1924, solo exhibition; the California Palace of Legion of Honor, 1946 memorial exhibition.
Louis XV, king of France, often called Jean-Baptiste Oudry to Versailles to paint the royal hounds--in the king's presence. "Monsieur Oudry had acquired such a habit of conversing with high-ranking persons and of working in their presence that he painted as calmly at the court as he would in his own studio," marveled a contemporary. Though his father was a painter and art dealer, Oudry's first serious training came from portrait painter Nicolas de Largillière. By about 1720, the young man was concentrating on animals, hunts, and landscapes. He became a member of the Académie de Peinture et de Sculpture in 1719 and a professor there in 1743. From 1726 Oudry had great success designing tapestries. In 1734 he was named director of the Beauvais tapestry manufactory, which he re-established by bringing in artists like François Boucher. Two years later, he became director of the Gobelins manufactory. Supervising all tapestry production gave Oudry considerable influence on French decorative arts. He also had a large studio and was literally overwhelmed by commissions. His clients included Czar Peter the Great of Russia and the Queen of Sweden. Oudry's work was marked by attention to detail combined with freedom of execution. A master of chiaroscuro, he maintained a lifelong interest in light and reflections.
Selden Connor Gile was an important member of the early northern California school of art, he was a founding member of the artist group that called themselves the Society of Six. He was born in Stow, Maine on March 20, 1877, and after attending business college in Maine, Gile moved to California in 1901. He was a payroll master in Lincoln and in Oakland after 1905 for Gladding McBean Company. His art studies were under Perham Nahl, Frank Van Sloun, Spencer Macky, William H. Clapp, and at the California College of Arts and Crafts. Prior to 1914, he painted in the manner of classical California landscape painters such as William Keith. After that time he assumed the palette and style of Impressionism-Fauvism, but remained an "individualist" in his mode of expressing the California scene. During the 1920s, he became the dominant figure in a group of painters known as the Society of Six. The Six were active in the San Francisco Bay area and exhibited regularly at the Oakland Art Gallery. In 1927 Gile moved across the Golden Gate to Tiburon and, shortly thereafter, to a houseboat in Belvedere. He died in San Rafael, California on June 8, 1947.