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 William H. Atkins  (1926 - 1995)

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Lived/Active: Arizona/Mississippi      Known for: landscape painting

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Ad Code: 4
William H Atkins
from Auction House Records.
Taos Canyon
Artwork images are copyright of the artist or assignee
This biography from the Archives of AskART:
William H. Atkins was an oil painter of the Upper East Verde River landscape near the foot of the Mongollon Rim in Arizona.  He devoted his life to art, and even put it above his family.

He received a degree in fine arts at the University of New Mexico where he studied with Randall Davey.  In 1950, he studied with Kenneth Adams and Oscar. E. Berninghaus in Taos.  He later became a teacher, and received much inspiration from his students.

Contemporary Western Artists by Harold and Peggy Samuels

Biography from American Design Ltd.:
A landscape artist, Bill Atkins, was born in Mississippi and first came West to study at the University of New Mexico, where he earned a degree in Fine Arts.  During the late 40's, he had the opportunity to study with western artists often referred to as the Taos group, including Oscar Berninghaus, Randall Davey, and Kenneth Adams.

Surprisingly enough, even this brush with the masters of the old west didn't cause Atkins to stray from his first love, the landscape.  Atkins tells us, "I've always considered myself a naturalist first and foremost, even with the Western and Indian influences around me.  I've been taken with the landscape since studying the works of Cezannne and Monet.  They were great talents at rendering mother nature at her best and were not afraid to alter imperfections to suit the beauty of their canvas," he emphasized.

After teaching throughout the 60's and 70's, with the last four years at Eastern Arizona College, Atkins decided to devote himself entirely to his painting.

"One never tires of the beauty of the canyons and desert scapes here,” Atkins says, "but nature is not always the perfect artist.  Recomposing elements in a landscape is almost always the rule rather than the exception.  I believe an artist should take liberties with nature's picture."

Bill Atkin's work demonstrates his love of color and portrays the change in season in an almost poetic way, involving the viewer in his quiet statements. He adds, "Art to me is something that's pleasing. I want my canvas to be full of color, yet still.”

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