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 William Partridge Burpee  (1846 - 1940)

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Lived/Active: Maine/Massachusetts      Known for: coastal view, landscape, genre, figure

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Ad Code: 3
William Partridge Burpee
Gloucester Harbor
Artwork images are copyright of the artist or assignee
This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Landscape and figure painter William Partridge Burpee was born in Rockland, Maine on April 13, 1846. As a young man, he was educated in Rockland schools and in the Kents Hill Academy in Readfield, Maine. He exhibited a great deal of interest as a youth in painting and drawing, In the late 1870s, he studied with marine painter, William Bradford (1823-1894). Burpee's early work of the 1880s reflects Bradford's influence as well as other painters such as Martin Johnson Heade, Fitz Hugh Lane, Frederic Edwin Church, A. T. Bricher and F. A. Silva.

After briefly advertising himself as an artist in the Rockland City Directory in 1882, Burpee appeared that year in Boston. By September 1, 1885, he was painting figures on Lynn Beach, Massachusetts, between Nahant and Swampscott in a style that now reflected the influence of French painting particularly Eugene Boudin and Emile Louis Vernier. He showed life of the beach with children at play, dorymen, lobstermen, netmenders, women waiting for the return of the boats, clamdiggers, and drying and folding sails. He began exhibiting in Boston in 1881 (Massachusetts Charitable Mechanics Association) and soon became a regular exhibitor (1890) and a member (1894) of the Boston Art Club. Until his trip abroad, Burpee maintained a position in bookkeeping and accounting.

In 1897, Burpee, age 51, left Boston to tour Spain, Italy, France and England by bicycle. It was with this trip that he was able to quit his non-art employment. He returned to the United States in 1899 and the next year spent the summer in Holland, where he discovered pastel. At the St. Louis Exposition, in 1904, he received a bronze medal in this medium. That same year, many of his paintings were burned in a fire in the Harcourt Studio Building in Boston, but he was a productive worker, and did approximately 800 paintings after this tragedy.

He also exhibited at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, Philadelphia; Art Institute of Chicago, Illinois; Corcoran Gallery, Washington D.C., the American Watercolor Society, the L. D. M. Sweat Museum (now Portland Museum of Art), in Maine; the Boston Society of Watercolor Painters and the Copley Society, Boston.

Burpee's paintings may be seen in the collections of the Museum of Fine Arts, Springfield, Massachusetts; Rockland Public Library; Cheekwood, Nashville, Tennessee; Columbia Museum of Art, Columbia, S.C.; Louisiana State University Museum of Art; the William A. Farnsworth Museum, Rockland, Maine; and the Portland Museum of Art, Maine.

D. Roger Howlett wrote two books about the artist. "William Partridge Burpee: American Marine Impressionist" and, in 1994, "The Lynn Beach Painters: Art Along the North Shore 1880 - 1920".

Burpee last lived in Boston in 1913. By 1914, he was back in Rockland, Maine. From 1927-1933, he divided his time between Rockland and East Orange, N.J. He died in Rockland in 1940.




Source:
http://www.childsgallery.com/artist_bio.php?artist_id=67
Peter Falk, "Who Was Who in American Art"











Biography from Childs Gallery:
William Partridge Burpee was born in Rockland, Maine on April 13, 1846 to Nathaniel A. and Mary Partridge Burpee. As a young man he was educated in Rockland schools and in the Kents Hill Academy in Readfield, Maine. He exhibited a great deal of interest as a youth in painting and drawing, and received his formal training from the marine painter, William Bradford (1823-1894) – probably in the late 1870s. Burpee’s early work of the 1880s reflects Bradford’s influence as well as other painters such as Fitz Hugh Lane, Frederic Edwin Church, Martin Johnson Heade, F. A. Silva and A. T. Bricher.

After briefly advertising himself as an artist in the Rockland City Directory in 1882, Burpee appeared that year in Boston. By September 1, 1885, he was painting figures on Lynn Beach, Massachusetts, between Nahant and Swampscott, in a style that reflected the influence of French painting – particularly that of Eugene Boudin and Emile Louis Vernier.

He showed life of the beach with children at play, dorymen, lobstermen, netmenders, women waiting for the return of the boats, clamdiggers, and drying and folding sails.

He began exhibiting in Boston in 1881 (Massachusetts Charitable Mechanics Association) and soon became a regular exhibitor (1890) and a member (1894) of the Boston Art Club. Until his trip abroad, Burpee maintained a position in bookkeeping and accounting.

In 1897, Burpee left Boston to tour Spain, Italy, France and England. He returned to the United States in 1899 and the next year returned to spend the summer in Holland. After his international travel and visits to the salons in Paris he became much more international in his viewpoint and his style became much more impressionistic. During the summer in Holland, he discovered pastel and soon developed a great facility and liking for the medium.

He was honored at the St. Louis Exposition of 1904 with a bronze medal for pastel. He also exhibited at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, the Art Institute of Chicago, the Corcoran Gallery, Washington D.C., the American Watercolor Society, the L. D. M. Sweat Museum (now Portland Museum of Art), the Boston Society of Watercolor Painters and the Copley Society, Boston.

Burpee is last listed with a Boston address in 1913. He reappears in Rockland in 1914 and is listed as dividing his time from 1927-1933 between Rockland and East Orange, N.J. He died in Rockland, Maine in 1940.

His work is in the permanent collections of the Museum of Fine Arts, Springfield, Massachusetts, the Rockland Public Library, Cheekwood, Nashville, Tennessee, Columbia Museum of Art, Columbia, S.C., the Louisiana State University Museum of Art, the William A. Farnsworth Museum, Rockland, Maine, and the Portland Museum of Art, Maine.

For more information see: William Partridge Burpee—American Marine Impressionist by D. Roger Howlett. Burpee is also one of the seven “Lynn Beach Painters” described in the 1994 book, "The Lynn Beach Painters: Art Along the North Shore 1880-1920" also by Howlett.

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