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 Carl Arthur Faille  (1882 - 1956)

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Lived/Active: California/Connecticut/Michigan/Rhode Island      Known for: landscape painting, graphic arts, crafts, art education

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Ad Code: 4
AskART Artist
from Auction House Records.
Artwork images are copyright of the artist or assignee
This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Charles Arthur Failles, AKA Carl Arthur Faille, was born on 17 February 1882 in Detroit, Michigan, a son of Charles Arthur and Cordelia Leduc Failles. The Failles family operated the Failles Silk and Ostrich Feather Dye Works for four generations, according to a Newport, Rhode Island newspaper.  The Failles family reportedly came to Detroit about 1850 from Laprairie, Quebec, Canada, though it was more likely after 1861, as Charles Sr. and his father, also Charles, are listed in the 1861 Canadian census.  Charles and Cordelia married on 13 December 1868 in a French Catholic church in Detroit, Michigan.  Charles is listed in Detroit city directories as an "Ostrich Feather Dyer" in 1881, with a notation that he had won a First Premium Award at the State Fair in 1880.  In one instance, he is mentioned as Charles Failles Jr., so his father may also have moved to Detroit.  The Failles relocated to Indianapolis, Indiana by 1884, where the family was still occupied in the ostrich feather trade.  Charles Failles was a charter member of the Indiana Audubon Society in 1898.  The family name appears as both Faille and Failles in records.

The first record of Carl is in the 1900 census of Indianapolis, though he was still known as Charles.  The first appearance of the use of the name of Carl was in the 1930 census.  Carl was living in Chicago, Illinois during the 1910 census, where he was employed as a "designer, interior".  His WWI draft registration card gave his profession as "Zoo Designer, self employed".  Failles was living in Seattle, Washington at the time.  Failles could not be located in the 1920 census, but was mentioned in the 1926 May issue of Dearborn Magazine as Charles Failles Jr. of Indianapolis, a "mountain painter" of great ability.  The first appearance of Carl A. Faille was in the 1930 census of San Diego, California, where he was employed as an "artist, landscapes".  According to a lengthy biography in Dictionnaire des artistes de langue francaise en Amerique du Nord by David Karel, Faille was living between Santa Cruz, CA and Brooklyn in 1925, in San Diego, CA and Columbus, OH in 1929 and Ocean Beach, CA in 1934.  Faille was living in Newark, New Jersey in 1938, where he was employed as an artist.  He was married to Joanne R. Mutschmann by this time.  Faille taught at the Albany Institute of History and Art in 1943 and there are several mentions of the "Carl A. Faille Lecture Courses in Art Appreciation" in the late 1940s.  The Failles relocated to Albany, New York by 1944 where he operated a business called Paint-O-Crayon-Crafts.  By 1948 he was also operating the Faille Studios of Art in addition to his earlier business.  The Failles were living in Gloucester, MA in 1953.

Faille exhibited his work at the Montclair Art Museum, Los Angeles Art Museum, Kansas City Art Institute, Detroit Art Institute, Maryland Art Institute, and J. B. Speed Museum in Louisville, Kentucky.  He also exhibited at the McClees Gallery in Philadelphia in 1934 and at the Albany Annual Exhibition in 1941.  He was a member of the Salmagundi Club, California Art Club and the American Artists Professional League.

Faille is listed in The Salons of America, 1922-1936 by Marlor, Who's Who in American Art (1953), Index of Artists by Mallett, Who Was Who in American Art by Falk, Davenports Art Reference and Price Guide, Dictionnaire des artistes de langue francaise en Amerique du Nord by David Karel, Artists of the West by Dawdy, and Artists in California by Hughes.

Faille died on 13 January 1956 in Newport, Rhode Island.  His obituary appeared in the The News in Newport, RI on the day of his death.

Carl Arthur Faille, Noted Marine Artist
Carl Arthur Faille, 72, marine painter, graver, lecturer and teacher, died of a heart attack at his home on Ledge Road today.  Mr. Faille had been preparing for a show, by invitation, at the Eggleston Galleries in New York. He had permanent exhibitions in the Joslyn Memorial Art Gallery, the Detroit Institute of Art and the Albany Institute of History and Art.  He also had exhibited in numerous other galleries in the country.  He was a member of the Solomon Grundy Club of New York.

Mr. Faille was born in Detroit, Mich., on Feb. 17, 1883.  He came to Newport from Salem, Mass. about two years ago.  During a chance visit to the city, he decided that this area was the best on the New England coast for marine painting. His Newport home was close to the ocean shore.

His wife, Mrs. Joan Mutschmann Faille, survives.  Services and burial will be held in Boscobel, Wis.

An article in The News in 1966 noted that Faille's widow had donated ten of his works called the "Dream Sequence" to Vernon Court Junior College.  Around the same time, his widow permitted a showing and sale of fourteen paintings, all marine scenes, that were to be part of the Eggleston Gallery Show.

Information provided by Kevin Daniel.

Added note:
There is a discrepancy in references concerning the artist's year of birth, recorded as 1882 as well as 1883.  The census of 1900 as well as the artist's draft card show the date as 1882.

This biography from the Archives of AskART:

Born in Detroit, Michigan on February 17, 1882, of Canadian parents, he was self-taught as an artist, primarily of landscapes.  Also a printmaker, he lived in San Diego in the 1930s, Hartford, Connecticut in the 1940s, and died in Newport, Rhode Island on January 13, 1956.

Edan Hughes, Artists in California
Additional information courtesy of Edward Bentley, researcher from Lansing, Michigan.

Biography from Williams American Art Galleries:
Carl Arthur Faille, the etcher, lithographer, teacher, lecturer, and painter was self-taught and never stayed in one place long.  He moved to San Diego during the 1930s, Hartford, Connecticut and Clarksville, New York during the 40s.  He moved to Gloucester, Massachusetts in 1953 and then finally settled in Newport, Rhode Island where he passed away in 1956.

Salmagundi Club
California Art Club
American Artists Professional League

“The Hum of the Mill,” Society of Fine Arts, Omaha, Nebraska
Joslyn Memorial
Detroit Institute of Art
Albany Institute of History & Art

Painters & Sculptors of Los Angeles, 1925
Salons of America, 1935
McClees Gallery, Philadelphia
Montclair Art Museum
Albany Institute of History & Art
Union College

Hughes, Artists in California 1786-1940 II
Opitz (ed.), Mantle Fielding’s Dictionary of American Painters, Sculptors & Engravers
Mallett, Index of Artists Biographical International
Falk (ed.), Who Was Who in American Art 1546-1975

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