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 Robert Elmer Lougheed  (1910 - 1982)

About: Robert Elmer Lougheed
 

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Lived/Active: Connecticut/New Mexico/Ontario / Canada/Mexico      Known for: western genre, landscape and horse painting

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BIOGRAPHY for Robert Lougheed
Facts/Data
Birth
1910 (Massie, Ontario, Canada)
 
Death
1982 (Santa Fe, New Mexico)

Lived/Active
Connecticut/New Mexico/Ontario / Canada/Mexico

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Often Known For
western genre, landscape and horse painting

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Western Painters
Illustrators
Biography from Claggett/Rey Gallery:
Robert Lougheed, who came to be known as "the painter's painter," was born and raised on a farm in Ontario, Canada. As a young child, Bob spent hours on the farm sketching animals and wildlife. After contemplating a career as a professional hockey player, he decided to become an artist. He moved to Toronto to work as a newspaper illustrator, while studying at night at the Ontario College of Art. At the age of 25 Bob began a life-long friendship with another illustrator named John Clymer. It was Clymer who convinced Bob to move to New York, where he studied under Frank Vincent Dumond at the famed Arts Students League. He continued working for thirty years as an illustrator and his work appeared in magazines such as National Geographic, Sports Afield and Reader's Digest.

In the late 1930’s, Bob decided to move back to Canada and en-list in the Canadian Army. He was stationed in Quebec outside of Valleyfield where he continued to paint often. His Post Commander was so impressed with his talent that he allowed Bob time off to study at Ecole des Beaux Arts in Montreal. Bob received orders to ship out to Europe shortly before the war ended, but was released from service before shipping out.

He spent the next 20 plus years in Westport, Connecticut where there was a large community of illustrators. During these years, among other things, he created the Flying Red Horse ads for Mobile Oil Company, and landed a multi-year commission for DuPont to paint the Annual National Field Dog Champions. It is in Westport that he met his wife Cordy, who was visiting from St. Croix, Virgin Islands, where she was working for the Red Cross. Soon afterwards, Bob traveled to the Virgin Islands and the two were married.

He traveled widely throughout the West, particularly the old Bell Ranch country of New Mexico. In 1970, he was commissioned by the Post Office Department to design the six-cent buffalo stamp for the Wildlife Conservation Series. Books he illustrated are Mustang, with the paintings in the Cowboy Hall of Fame, and San Domingo.

In 1970 Bob and Cordy decided to make Santa Fe, New Mexico their home, where he lived until his death in 1982.

Robert Lougheed was dedicated to painting. Although he spent over thirty years as an illustrator, he always considered himself a fine art painter. He spent much of his time traveling and painting Alaska, Quebec, Hawaii, Virgin Islands, England, France and British Columbia. Relative to outdoor painting he used to say that "the best information is always in front of you", and he lived by this. Years of observation had taught him to work quickly and from nature, whenever possible.

Robert Lougheed's interest in art went far beyond his own easel. He was one of the prime movers in the founding of the National Academy of Western Art at the National Cowboy Hall of Fame, and continued to serve as an adviser for many years. He also gave generously of his time as a teacher to many young painters who came to him.

Throughout his lifetime Lougheed earned over 25 awards at both the National Academy of Western Art and the Cowboy Artists of America.

Biography from Thomas Nygard Gallery:
Robert Lougheed, who came to be known as "the painter's painter," was born and raised on a farm in Ontario, Canada. At nineteen, he was a mail-order and newspaper illustrator for the "Toronto Star", studying at night at the Ontario College of Art and then at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Montreal. At age twenty-five, he came to New York as the pupil of Frank Vincent DuMond and Dean Cornwell at the famed Art Students League. He continued working for over thirty years as an illustrator and his work appeared in magazines such as "National Geographic", "Sports Afield" and "Reader's Digest" .

He traveled widely throughout the West, particularly the old Bell Ranch country of New Mexico. In 1970, he was commissioned by the Post Office Department to design the six-cent buffalo stamp for the Wildlife Conservation Series. Books he illustrated are "Mustang", with the paintings in the Cowboy Hall of Fame, and "San Domingo". He was a multiple-award winner at both the National Academy of Western Art and the Cowboy Artists of America.

Robert Lougheed was a quiet, forceful man, dedicated to painting. Relative to outdoor painting he said that "the best information is always in front of you", and he lived by this. Years of observation had taught him to work quickly and from nature whenever possible. His enthusiasm was boundless when natural phenomena were under discussion; a favorite comment was "Isn't it wonderful?"

Because of his early years on the farm and years of study devoted to animals and landscape, his knowledge was encyclopedic. This strong background coupled with a fine color sense continued to make him one of the most forceful painters of our time, a true artist's artist. In his ability to select, he saw the best and the most telling of whatever was before him. When his rapid brush struck in sunlight on an adobe wall, to many viewers it was better than the wall itself.

Robert Lougheed's interest in art went far beyond his own easel. He was one of the prime movers in the founding of the National Academy of Art at the National Cowboy Hall of Fame, and continued to serve as an advisor for many years. He also gave generously of his time as a teacher to many young painters who came to him.

As a beneficiary of the legacy of Frank Vincent DuMond, Harold Von Schmidt, Sir Alfred Munning, Frederic Remington and a legion of others, Robert Lougheed felt obliged to help preserve their artistic traditions. He championed realism at a time when the mainstream of American art had lapsed increasingly into abstraction.


Note:  Relative to the death date of the artist,  the "Lougheed" book written by Bryon Price states on page 118, in the Epilogue, "On June 12, 1982, less than two weeks after Robert Lougheed's death, the National Academy of Western Art paid him a tribute at its annual awards banquet..."

Biography from Nedra Matteucci Galleries:
Robert E. Lougheed was born on farm in central Canada, in a small village called Massie. He was the second of three sons, all of whom learned to cut wheat, stack hay, hoe corn and shovel manure. When the boys were school age, the family moved to Dufferin County. Lougheed attended a red brick schoolhouse, where many students rode a horse to class.

As a very young boy, he began to sketch the animals and wildlife around him. As a teen, he began to seriously consider a career as an artist. He began his study with a correspondence course. His formal art training continued at the Ontario College of Arts and the École des Beaux-Arts in Montréal. During his early twenties, Lougheed worked full-time as an illustrator for the Toronto Star, attended night school, and painted on the weekends.

Later, he studied with Frank Vincent Dumond and Dean Cornwell in New York. He was such an outstanding pupil that in later years in a reunion with Lougheed, Dumond said: "There goes the best I ever had!" That was high praise indeed from a man who had also taught Georgia O'Keeffe, Buck Dunton and Norman Rockwell.

Though he never quite felt at home in New York, so far from the rustic lands of his childhood, Lougheed was very successful. His commercial work included the flying red horse for Mobile Oil, several books, and calendars for Brown & Bigelow. The United States Post Office commissioned him to do the six-cent Buffalo Stamp. He spent half of the year on commercial endeavors, and the other half on fine art painting and associated travel. He traveled throughout his beloved Canada and the West, including Alaska, usually seeking wildlife subjects. He was often accompanied by his friend, John Clymer. In 1980, Lougheed began traveling to Europe, first to France where he produced 44 paintings in 30 days, and the next year to England, where he produced 77 paintings in 45 days.

Among Lougheed's many commissions was a horse series for The National Geographic in the early 1960s, at the famous Bell Ranch in eastern New Mexico. He found the country so beautiful that he returned to New Mexico every fall until 1970, when he and his wife Cordy decided to move to Santa Fe permanently.

Lougheed was elected to membership in the Cowboy Artists of America (CAA) in 1968, and to the National Academy of Western Art (NAWA) in 1973. He won an astounding 27 gold and silver medals in their exhibitions. In addition, he won the Colt Firearms Award (CAA), the Jasper Cropsey Award, the Grumbacher Award, the Franklin Mint Gold Medal for Distinguished Western Art and the Miriam B. Cropsey Award.

Source:
Nedra Matteucci Galleries, representing Robert E. Lougheed.

Biography from Altermann Galleries and Auctioneers, IV:
Painter of animals in the outdoors, born in Gray County, Ontario in 1921 and living in Santa Fe, New Mexico since 1970. I always use nature as my model,” Lougheed says, “If I should paint a horse from memory, it would be a Bob Lougheed horse and not a real horse. All the horses, in fact all the animals in my paintings, are real. To the young, unspoiled artist, I would say…learn to draw and paint from life. Don’t get trapped by photography.”

As a child on a Canadian farm, Lougheed sketched animals from nature and at nineteen was employed to do illustrations for a catalog. He went to the Ontario College of Arts and the Ecole des Beaux Arts in Montreal and worked as a commercial artist on the Toronto Start for six years. To perfect his skills, he studied with Frank Vincent DeMond and Dean Cornwell as the Arts Students League in New York City, supporting himself by continuing in commercial art. One product was Mobil’s “Flying Red Horse.” To get closer to his peers, he moved to a barn in Westport, Connecticut, a town where 60 artists lived.

When they were starting out, fellow painter John Clymer told Lougheed to “forget doing those horses. Do pretty girls. That’s what’s selling.” Lougheed declares that he “never did learn to paint girls. I kept on doing horses and cornered the market for ads that called for animals. Now, John is doing horses.” Lougheed usually begins an animal picture by painting the landscape on the spot and the animals from life, on locations or at a zoo or game farm. He is a member of the Cowboy Artists of America, and has won its “most popular” artist award.

Resource:Contemporary Western Artists, by Peggy and Harold Samuels 1982, Judd’s Inc., Washington, D.C.


Biography from Nuevo Santander Gallery:
ROBERT LOUGHEED

Lougheed was born in Ontario, Canada in 1910. He received his art education at the Ontario College of Art and at Ecole des Beaux Arts in Montreal and was known to have studied under Frank DuMond and Dean Cornwell.

The artist worked as an illustrator for the Toronto Star, National Geographic, and Reader's Digest. He designed Mobil's "flying red horse" logo and was commissioned by the US Post Office to design the six cent buffalo stamp for the Wildlife Conservation Series. He helped to form the National Academy of Western Art at the Phoenix Art Museum in Arizona. He also taught and mentored many of today's finest wilderness artists.

The artist was awarded the Western Heritage Award in 1966 and gold medals for painting by the National Cowboy Hall of Fame in 1969 and 1972. His work can presently be viewed at the Cowboy Hall of Fame.

Robert Lougheed was an easel painter and always painted as well as taught his pupils to paint directly from nature.

He died in Santa Fe, New Mexico in 1982.



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