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Robert Duncan

 (born 1952)
Robert Duncan is active/lives in Utah.  Robert Duncan is known for western landscape with wildlife and figures-snowscenes.

Robert Duncan

Biography from the Archives of askART

Born in Salt Lake City, Robert Duncan settled in Midway, Utah in 1976 and became a representational oil painter of western figure, genre, wildlife and landscapes with many of his subjects such as wild animals and figures including Indians on horseback shown in mountain landscapes, especially snowscenes.  He also painted genre depictions such as a woman tending her garden, a young boy with his dog waiting for the school bus, a cowboy breaking a horse, and a man fishing a mountain stream.

He spent most of his youth on family ranches in the upper Green River area of Wyoming.  He attended the University of Utah for two years and then began painting full time. He studied with John Clymer, Robert Lougheed, and Edward Fraughton, who was his neighbor.

The youngest artist ever asked to join the Cowboy Artists of America*, he joined in 1982 but dropped his membership in 1987 because he has never been a joiner of organizations.  However, he continued painting ranch and farm life.  Participating in several CAA exhibitions, Duncan received the Oil Painting Award, Silver for 1984 and 1985.

Sources: auction images
Peggy and Harold Samuels, Contemporary Western Artists
CA Cowboy Artists of America 44th Annual Exhibition, 2009,
Exhibition catalogue published by the Cowboy Artists of America and the Phoenix Art Museum.

* See AskART Glossary


Biography from Trailside Galleries
Robert Duncan, b. 1952, Salt Lake City, UT, (United States)

Robert Duncan was born and raised in Utah, but spent his childhood summers on his grandfather's ten thousand acre Wyoming cattle ranch surrounded by beautiful open country. An aspiring artist from an early age, it was this idyllic childhood that would deeply instill in him a love of nature and rural life that continues to be the central focus of his life and art today.

Robert began painting at the age of 11. He studied at the University of Utah and worked as a commercial artist before his full-time dedication to fine art. Robert's art education includes work in Canada with the late CAA artist Robert Lougheed, the study of European artists in France, Sweden, and Spain and the English artist Alfred Munnings.

In 1982 Duncan was the youngest person invited to join the Cowboy Artists of America organization. During his five-year association with the group, Duncan developed a national following for his oil paintings, mainly historical subject matter. Despite his enormous success with the organization, Duncan resigned in 1987 to devote more time to his increasing passion for painting farm life and nostalgic vignettes of rural America.

Today, Duncan sees his work as a return to old values. Often painting outside, direct from life, his canvas speaks of family and neighbors, a simple and honest way of life that is in eminent danger of disappearing from the American landscape. Several trips to Europe have inspired a number of landscapes and pastoral scenes. Duncan says, "I'm interested in the ways we are all alike and feelings that are universal. I also paint out of concern that we are losing sight of things that have a profound impact on our souls and well being. We all need a bit of nature in our lives." He adds, "With my art, comes the hope that we might all try to save those things that really matter and leave our children a world where they can still enjoy the simple pleasures."

• University of Utah
Selected Exhibitions
• Autry National Center, Masters of the American West, Los Angeles, CA
• Great American Artists Exhibition, Cincinnati, OH
• Northwest Rendezvous, Helena, MT
• Cowboy Artists of America, Phoenix, AZ
Selected Publications
• Peggy and Harold Samuels, Contemporary Western Artists
• Erivan and Helga Haub Family, Collection of Western Art, Volume I & Volume II, Mollring Enterprises, 2005
Selected Press
• Western Art Collector, February, 2009
• Art of the West, June, 2007
• Art in America, April, 2006
• Art of the West, Timeless Art, Vicki Stavig, November, 2002
• Art of the West, The Studio, Vicki Stavig, December, 2001
• Art Talk, December, 1997
• Cowboy Artists of America, Tucson, AZ, 1982-1987
Selected Collections
• Erivan & Helga Haub
• Cowboy Artists of America, Silver Medal, 1985
• Cowboy Artists of America, Silver Medal, 1984

Biography from Altermann Galleries and Auctioneers, II
Robert Duncan is an oil painter in traditional style of "people, sometimes mountain men, sometimes farmers and ranchers, but most often Indians." He was born in Salt Lake City, Utah in 1952 and living in Midway, Utah, since 1976. "What inspires me, and is usually the underlying theme," he points out, "is people coping and making the best of their environment. I'm fascinated with the ability of the human spirit to overcome obstacles and the West is full of examples of this.

"I began drawing animals when I was five and did my first oil painting when I was eleven. I spent most of my summers on family ranches in the upper Green River area of Wyoming. It was these summers that had the greatest effect on my painting. I continued painting all through my school years in Salt Late City and sold my first big painting for $55 to my junior high school. After high school, I attended the University of Utah for two years before deciding that I would learn more just painting full time.

"My neighbor Edward Fraughton was of great help. I later was lucky enough to meet John Clymer who has given me advice, and in 1977, I spent a month studying with Robert Lougheed. My friend Valoy Eaton has also been a tremendous help, but I think the greatest challenge for any young artist is to make 'the song' his own, to try to say something that comes from within, instead of just doing new versions of another man's idea. I get most of my ideas from just observing people because I don't think people have changed that much from the past in the basic ways they react to situations. I've never joined any art organizations or entered shows. It hasn't interested me."

"Contemporary Western Artists", by Peggy and Harold Samuels 1982, Judd's Inc., Washington, D.C.

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About  Robert Duncan

Born:  1952 - Salt Lake City, Utah
Known for:  western landscape with wildlife and figures-snowscenes