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 Robert Baranet  (1925 - 2001)

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Lived/Active: Pennsylvania/New York      Known for: portrait and abstact landscape painting

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This biography from the Archives of AskART:
ROBERT BARANET  1925-2001  Biography
Born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, December 19th 1925. Robert Baranet showed artistic talent at an early age. He won a certificate of merit in the National High School art exhibit at the Carnegie Institute (1)
Baranet enjoyed a very successful career as a portrait painter as well as a painter of abstract landscapes of which he had four very distinctive styles. He often cited Rembrandt, Turner and Rothko as influences.
In 1946, Baranet enrolled at the prestigious Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts (PAFA) in Philadelphia, the oldest fine arts school in the United States, founded in 1805. (2) It was at PAFA that Baranet also enrolled in the Chester Springs Summer Program and first met Dr. Albert Barnes, of the famed Barnes Foundation, and was invited to study there. (3)
In May of 1948, at the age of 22, Baranet was awarded the highly prestigious William Emlen Cresson Award for travel and study in Europe by the PAFA. (4) He also studied at the Grand Chaumier in Paris, France during this time. (5)
Baranet graduated from PAFA and in June 1950 married fellow alumnus, Elizabeth Ferzacca.  He won awards at Exhibition 80 in April 1955, April 1958 and April 1959. (6)  In 1965 he was established at the Hotel Des Artistes in New York City. In 1967 he was asked to join the ranks of portrait painters at Portraits, Inc. on Park Avenue. (7)
During this time Baranet began painting landscapes in his converted barn in Connecticut.  These quickly developed into a very abstract style. His travels to Jamaica, the Bahamas and Greece heavily influenced his style bringing lots of color to his landscapes.  During the 1970's, Baranet had several shows of his landscapes, most notably at the Lyford Cay Gallery in the Bahamas. (8)
Throughout the late 70's and early 80's he kept a second studio in the mountains of Kentucky.  His Kentucky landscapes are completely different from his other work. The influence of Mark Rothko, who he met several times in NYC, is very evident in this period.
In the 1980's Baranet was asked to join the Silvermine Guild of Artists in New Canaan, Connecticut, where he participated in several shows over the years. (9)

He was also an artist member of the Rowaton Arts Center in Rowayton, Connecticut.  In 1984 he was published in the Spring Edition of Who's Who in American Art. (10)
In 1994 he participated in  a two-man show at the Carriage Barn Arts Center in New Canaan, Connecticut along with sculptor, Lubomir Tomaszewski. (11)
From 1996 to 2000, Baranet taught portraiture at the Art Students League in New York.  His classes were so popular that they were expanded into two studios. (12)
Baranet traveled extensively during his lifetime spending much time painting in the Bahamas, Jamaica, Haiti, Italy, Spain, France, Germany, England and Greece.  His paintings can be found in all of these countries.
Robert Baranet died in April of 2001 at the age of 76 in his Connecticut home where he had painted for 35 years. Mark Seavey of the New Yorker Magazine had quoted Baranet as saying, "Artists are a curious breed, they paint because they have to, and damn the consequences." (13)
Ocean Reef Club, Key Largo, Florida January 1979 (14)
Lynn Kottler Gallery, Manhattan, Mar 3-18, 1979 (15)
Bell Gallery, Stamford, Connecticut, October 27- November 16, 1983 (16)
James Hunt Barker Gallery, Nantucket   August 22-28, 1989 (17)
James Hunt Barker Gallery, Palm Beach  1990
Horten Collection, Germany
Weimar Collection, Germany
Damerell Collection, England
Dr. Stanley Bond, England (5)
Bacardi Collection, Nassau
Courtalds Ltd, England
Justak Collection, Delaware
Young & Rubican, New York
Senator Robert Byrd, Corcoran Gallery, Washington, DC
Joan Collins
Mrs. Arthur Hailey
Baroness de Gunzburg
Marguerite Pindling, wife of Premier Pindling
Dudley Schoales
Countess de Lessups
Countess Solange de Bruyere
1.)  Certificate No. 1113 Carnegie Institute, Pittsburgh
2.)  Registrar at PAFA.  Also, Yearbooks from Winter Session 1946-7,  Winter  Session     1947-8,  Summer Session 1948,  Winter Session 1948-9,  Winter Session 1949-50.
3)  Letter from Violette De Mazia dated May 12, 1946,  letter from Barnes Foundation dated September 19, 1946 and letter from Dr. Albert Barnes dated December 4, 1946
4)  Certificate No. 795, Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, May 19, 1948
5)  Art Students League Catalog 1996-1997,  Robert Baranet biography
6)  Herald Advertiser  April 3, 1955;  April 27, 1958;  May 10, 1959
7)  Portraits, Inc Catalog, 1967. New Yorker' Magazine July 20, 1968. Art Gallery Magazine June 1968.
8)  Tribune Nassau, Bahamas April 11, 1972,  'Tribune' February 20, 1973,  'Tribune'  March 10, 1974
9) Promotional pamphlets from Silvermine Guild of Artists
10) Who's Who in American Art, 16th Edition, Spring 1984, Tempe Arizona
11)  Carriage Barn Arts Center promo,  Waveny Park, New Canaan, Connecticut, June 1994.
12)  Art Students League Yearbooks, 1996-97,  1997-98,  1998-99, 1999-2000
13)  New Yorker Magazine, July 20, 1968.  Article by Mark Seavey
14)  Logan Banner,  November10,1978
15)  New York Times,  March 4, 1979
16)  Bell Gallery, letter dated November 30, 1983
17)  James Hunt Barker Gallery Promo, August 22-28, 1989

Written and submitted by Peter Baranet, son of the artist

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