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 Belmore Browne  (1880 - 1954)

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Lived/Active: New York/California/Alberta      Known for: landscape, wild life painting, sculpture

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Belmore H. Brown is primarily known as Belmore Browne

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Biography from Braarud Fine Art:
Born in Tompkinsville, New York, Belmore Browne studied at the New York School of Art and the Academie Julian in Paris.  As famous in the annals of mountaineering as he is as an artist, his best-known and most widely collected paintings are of Alaska, Washington, California, and the Canadian Rockies.  His paintings of animals and landscapes combine the attention to naturalistic detail of a naturalist and mountaineer with a bold, expressive painterly touch.

Browne first traveled to Alaska in 1888 as an eight-year-old child on a sightseeing trip with his family.  Between 1902 and 1912, he made several return visits as a member of mammal-collecting expeditions for the American Museum of Natural History, and participated in three pioneering attempts to climb then-unscaled Mount McKinley, North America's highest peak.  At the close of this period, Browne continued to write and to pursue mountaineering, but settled chiefly on his work as an artist.

After serving in World War I, the artist, with his wife, Agnes, moved to Banff, Alberta, where they lived year-round at first, later wintering in California.  For several years beginning in 1930, he was director of the Santa Barbara School of Fine Arts.  During that time, he began producing background paintings for museum displays of mammal habitats.  He produced notable examples for the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History, Boston Museum of Science, and the American Museum of Natural History.

In addition to the extensive collection of Browne's paintings at the Glenbow-Alberta Institute in Calgary, his works are widely represented in major American museums, among them the National Museum of American Art, Shelburne (Vermont) Museum, National Museum of Wildlife Art, and Amherst College Museum.

This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Career Highlights from Painting in the North by Kesler Woodward

...........Browne's 1913 'Mt. McKinley, the South Face' is one of his most striking images of the mountain that captured his focus for almost a decade.  It is painted with the attention to detail that is that of a naturalist and mountaineer, and the drama and skill of one of the country's most noted mountain painters.

............In 1902 and 1903, while still in his early 20s, Browne served as hunter, illustrator and specimen preparer for naturalist Andrew Jackson Stone on his Alaska mammal collecting expedition for the American Museum of Natural History.

...........After 1905 Browne turned his energies to mountaineering and was part of a group that in 1907 made the first ascent of Mt. Olympus in Washington State.

............An oil he painted in 1907 of Mount McKinley is the earliest known painting of the mountain.

........Browne later wrote many articles about his experiences on the mountain, and in 1913 published 'The Conquest of Mt. McKinley', which was illustrated with his own works. He continued to write and climb, but thereafter settled chiefly on being an artist.

........He was elected to the National Academy of Design.

This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Belmore Browne was a sculptor, landscape and animal painter and illustrator who late in his career became well known for his illustrations of Alaskan travel books. He wrote and illustrated The Conquest of Mt. McKinley.  Browne was born in Staten Island, New York.  He studied with William Merritt Chase and Carroll Beckwith and at the Academie Julian in Paris.

From 1902 to 1912, he worked as an illustrator and after that took up fine-art painting.  In 1926, he moved to California, where he served as the Director of the Santa Barbara School of Arts from 1930 to 1934.  Later in his life, he divided his time between Ross, California, and Alberta, Canada.

Exhibition venues included the Pennsylvania Academy and the National Academy of Design, and he was a member of the National Academy.

Edan Hughes, Artists in California, 1786-1940

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