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 Fred (Frederick) Machetanz  (1908 - 2002)

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Lived/Active: Alaska/New York/Ohio      Known for: Arctic landscape, wildlife and genre painting

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Ad Code: 2
  AskART Artist  
Biography from Braarud Fine Art:
Fred Machetanz is the most widely acclaimed artist to continue the traditional frontier image of Alaska into the present day. Focusing on Alaskan animals, Native people, pioneers, and the dramatic landscape, Machetanz's work is widely reproduced and highly sought after by individuals and public collections throughout the United States and abroad.

Born in 1908 in Kenton, Ohio, and trained in art at Ohio State University, Machetanz intended a brief visit to his uncle Charles Traeger's remote Unalakleet, Alaska trading post in 1935, but remained for two years. After working as an illustrator in New York, sailing with a Coast Guard patrol along Alaska's coast, and serving in the Aleutians with the Navy in World War II, the artist returned to Unalakleet, where he met and married writer Sara Dunn in 1947. The couple worked together on books, films, and lecture tours for many years, and they lived in the home they built near Palmer from 1950 until Sara's death in September 2001.

Since that time, Machetanz has become almost as much a legend as Sydney Laurence and Eustace Ziegler among long-time Alaskans. His oil paintings on masonite employ ultramarine blue underpainting followed by many traditional linseed oil glazes, achieving a luminosity reminiscent both of Renaissance painters and of the twentieth-century painter Maxfield Parrish, who was an early influence on the artist.

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Fred Machetanz is also mentioned in these AskART essays:
Notable Alaska

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