Landscape painter. Born in Norway on June 1, 1856. Jonnevold came to the U.S. in the 1880s and is known to have painted in the Northwest before moving to California in 1887. Settling in San Francisco, he maintained a studio at 1617 California Street. He was a self-taught painter except for brief study in the galleries of Paris in 1908. While in France, he was influenced by the Barbizon painters and their dark palette. Returning to California, he continued to paint the beauty of northern California in the Barbizon style. Often working in late afternoon when shadow prevails, he produced hundreds of attractive tree and meadow scenes which he exhibited in local galleries. By the time of the stock market crash in 1929, Jonnevold was poverty stricken and living alone at his small studio at 560 Kearny Street. In that year he was sentenced to two months in jail for aiming a gun at his landlord. Jonnevold disappeared from San Francisco about 1930. A letter at the Oakland Museum gives his date of death as June 9, 1955 but no location. His works have gained renewed respect in recent years and are highly sought after by collectors. Exhibitions: Calif. State Fair, 1899-1902 (awards); Mechanics' Inst. (SF), 1897; SFAA, 1908-12; Alaska-Yukon Expo (Seattle), 1909 (bronze medal); Kanst Gallery (LA), 1915. In: Oakland Museum; CHS; De Young Museum. Source: Edan Hughes,
Born in Denver, CO on Aug. 7, 1897, Curtis was a resident of Seattle before moving to Los Angeles in 1914. He was inspired to become an artist by his teacher Rob Wagner at Manual Arts High School. After working as a bank teller and serving in WWI, he soon was able to support himself as an illustrator. He served as official artist of the U.S. Antarctica Expedition in 1939-40 and again in 1957. About 1960 he changed his residence from Los Angeles to Twenty Nine Palms, California, with summers in Moose, Wyoming. An avid mountain climber, his studio in the Grand Tetons was a rustic log cabin. In 1972 he moved to Carson City, Nevada, where he remained until his demise on March 17, 1989. He is best known for his landscapes of the High Sierra, Grand Tetons, and Antarctica. His works won dozens of medals and prizes from the early 1920s in southern California shows. Member: Carmel Art Association; Artland Club. Exh: California Art Club, 1923-27; Laguna Beach Art Association, 1924; California State Fair, 1926; Cannell & Chaffin Gallery (Los Angeles), 1926; Ebell Club (Los Angeles), 1926; Painters & Sculptors of Los Angeles, 1926-31; National Academy of Design, 1930; Toledo Museum, 1931; American Painters & Sculptors, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, 1931, 1937 (solo), 1946 (solo); Oakland Art Gallery, 1932; Tuesday Afternoon Club (Glendale), 1934; Golden Gate International Exhibition, 1939; California Palace Legion of
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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.
HUNT, Esther Anna (1875-1951). Painter, sculptor. Born in Grand Island, Nebraska on August 30, 1875. Esther Hunt moved to San Diego in 1881 and she grew up on a ranch there. From 1896-1900 she worked as an artist in Los Angeles. Upon moving to San Francisco, she studied art at the Mark Hopkins Institute (1901). As a means to finance her art studies, she began painting Chinatown subjects which she sent to a New York dealer who readily sold them. After studying portraiture with William M. Chase in New York City from 1905-06, she continued her studies for six years in Paris. While in Paris her portrait of her sister was hung in the Paris Salon. Returning to California, she had a studio in Los Angeles for four years and from 1918-27 she lived in San Francisco; during 1927-31 she lived in Greenwich Village in New York City. The years 1932-46 were again spent in San Francisco. Her oils, watercolors, etchings, and colored ceramic figurines were very popular with the general public during her productive years, having been reproduced commercially for postcards, calendars, prints, busts, etc. Hunt was very fond of the artistically-created and individually-named "children" she would never have in real life. After a stroke ended her career, she was taken to the Santa Ana (CA) Rest Home. A spinster, she died there on March 4, 1951. Member: Laguna Beach Art Ass'n. Exhibited: Panama California Expo (San Diego), 1915 (gold medal); San Francisco Art Ass'n, 1916. Works held: California Historical Society.
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.
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.
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