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 William Glackens

William Glackens

Birth
Philadelphia, Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania, USA
Death 22 May 1938 (aged 68)
Westport, Fairfield County, Connecticut, USA
Burial Hartford, Hartford County, Connecticut, USA
Plot Section 1, Lot 104
Memorial ID 396 · View Source
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Artist. He is remembered for being one of “The Eight,” a group of 20th century artists who held a show in January 1908 at the MacBeth's Gallery in New York City. Deviating from the tradition thought of art, this group consisted of their leader and art instructor, Robert Henri and other realistic artists: John French Sloan, Maurice Pendergast, Ernest Lawson, Everett Shinn, George Bellows, Arthur Davies and Glackens. Although these men differed in their styles, all were “united in their advocacy of exhibition opportunities free from the jury system as their belief in content and painting techniques that were not necessarily sanctioned by the conservative National Academy of Design.” By rejecting these artist of realistic thought of art, the National Academy of Design was impacting their livelihood. This group of artist needed representation and as an act of protest, “The Eight” held their own show in 1908. The Ashcan School of Art in New York City evolved from “The Eight”. This school was interested in capturing the real but modern imaging of the working-class New Yorkers in paintings of bright, rich colors. At that time, many thought this subject was vulgar, inappropriate and undesirable. An American realistic painter, Glackens' street scenes of middle-class city dwellers was rejected by the 19th Century academic art culture. As many of the other members of “The Eight” he studied at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. He was employed as an illustrator by various newspapers including the Philadelphia Record, the Public Ledger and the Philadelphia Press. After studying in 1895 with Henri throughout Europe but mainly in Paris, France, he made his home in New York City on Washington Square in the bohemian Greenwich Village. He became an illustrator for the New York Herald and the New York World. For the McClure's Magazine, he covered the Spanish-American War in Cuba in 1898. During that time, his finely detailed pen-and-ink drawing, “American Troops Boarding Transport Steamer: Spanish-American War,” was done and is today on display at the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C. While establishing a career as a graphic artist, he also began to paint in oils and was a regular participant in the Pennsylvania Academy's annual exhibitions. His 1901 “Hammerstein's Roof Garden” was his first noted oil painting and was exhibited at Allen's Gallery in New York City. Another major work, was his 1905 “At Mouquin's,” which shows in details the rich, bold colors of a couple sitting at a table in a fine New York City restaurant. Like many of “The Eight,” he participated in the 1913 Armory Show of New York City. Although he was part of “The Eight” and the Ashcan School of thought, he developed his own concept of painting blending many things and ideas he had learned over the years. Impressionism, especially Renoir with his feather-like touch of a brush, became a influence in Glackens' later work. There was also a Norman-Rockwell-look about some of his paintings. In the last two decades of his life, he was a frequent traveler to Europe, especially Paris and the south of France. With his advance knowledge of European art, he became an art adviser and purchaser for American art collector and high school classmate, Albert C. Barnes. In 1912 Barnes sat for a portrait drawn in conte crayon on tan-colored wove paper. Glackens' son, Ira, donated to Wadsworth Antheneum the 1904 painting done of his mother in a fur coat covering a white dress, “The Artist's Wife, Edith Dimock Glackens, in Her Wedding Dress.” Also an artist, his wife came into her full inheritance in 1917 which afforded the couple the time to paint regularly. He suddenly died while visiting in Hartford, Connecticut. He was honored with two posthumous shows, the Whitney Museum of American Art and the Carnegie Institute at Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

Bio by: Linda Davis


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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Added: 1 Jan 2001
  • Find A Grave Memorial 396
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for William Glackens (13 Mar 1870–22 May 1938), Find A Grave Memorial no. 396, citing Cedar Hill Cemetery, Hartford, Hartford County, Connecticut, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .