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 George Michael Gaethke  (1898 - 1982)

About: George Michael Gaethke


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Lived/Active: California/North Dakota      Known for: stylized wildlife, graphics, mural

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BIOGRAPHY for George Gaethke
1898 (Bathgate, North Dakota)
1982 (Mill Valley, California)

California/North Dakota

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stylized wildlife, graphics, mural

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This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Born in Bathgate, ND on July 31, 1898. At age two Gaethke moved with his family to Butte, MT where he spent his early years. He attended the University of Montana and University of Washington in Seattle before settling in San Francisco in 1924. Upon choosing an art career, he studied at the AIC, continued his art studies with Rudolph Schaeffer in color and design, and at the CSFA. He assisted Maxine Albro on her Coit Tower mural (1934) and did lithographic work for the WPA. Gaethke worked as an engineer and draftsman at Kaiser and Bechtel shipyards during WWII. In 1967 he moved across the bay to Mill Valley where he remained until his death on Aug. 28, 1982. His love of birds and animals is evident in his artworks. Member: SFAA; Calif. Society of PM. Exh: GGIE, 1939; NY World's Fair, 1939; Gumps (SF), 1949. In: SFMA; Baywood School (San Mateo).
Edan Hughes, "Artists in California, 1786-1940"
SF Chronicle, 3-10-1940; Interview with the artist or his/her family.
Nearly 20,000 biographies can be found in Artists in California 1786-1940 by Edan Hughes and is available for sale ($150). For a full book description and order information please click here.

This biography from the Archives of AskART:
George Michael Gaethke, muralist, printmaker and painter, was born in 1898 in Bathgate, North Dakota. He spent his early years in Montana with his family where he attended the University of Montana. In 1924, Gaethke relocated to San Francisco in 1924.

He studied at the California School of Fine Art and with Rudolph Schaeffer learning about color and design. In the 1930's he worked as a WPA (Works Progress Administration) printmaker in California and contributed to Maxine Albro's Coit Tower mural in 1934.

During World War II, he worked at Kaiser and Bechtel shipyards as an engineer and draftsman. Gaethke was known to have exhibited with his wife Vera Allison at Gump's in San Francisco in 1949. He died in Mill Valley, California in 1982.

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