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 William D. Gorman  (1925 - 2005)

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Lived/Active: New Jersey      Known for: mod views-structure painting, drawings, woodcuts

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An example of work by William D. Gorman
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This biography from the Archives of AskART:
The following obituary, submitted by Gerard Nowicki, was prepared by Jan Gary, wife of the artist.

William D. Gorman, 79, Bayonne artist, leader in art circles

Services for William D. Gorman, one of the seven founding members of the Hudson Artists and a longtime Bayonne resident, were held Friday, January 28, 2005 at 10 a.m. at G. Keenen O'Brien Funeral Home, Bayonne, NJ. He died Tuesday, January 25, 2005, at Bayonne Medical Center.

A Jersey City native, Gorman attended St. Joseph's School and St. Peter's Prep. After a World War II tour of duty in Europe, he attended the Newark School of Fine and Industrial Arts and, upon graduating, became active in art exhibition circles.

He served as president of the New Jersey Watercolor Society from 1957 to 1958, the Allied Artists of America from 1978 to 1981, and the American Watercolor Society from 1986 until 1993. He was a member of the National Academy of Design and was an honorary member of the Audubon Artists, on whose board of directors he served for many years.

In 1962, he and his wife, Jan Gary, whom he met through the Hudson Artists, established the Old Bergen Art Guild. This guild assembled and circulated traveling art exhibitions throughout the U.S. and Canada. Working out of their home in Bayonne, they represented hundreds of artists in the group and exhibits for 27 years. They traveled to England and Ireland in search of subjects.

Gorman was also a painter who exhibited his work extensively throughout the United States and through the U.S. Department of State, in embassies throughout the world. His award-winning paintings and graphics are included in the collections of Butler Institute of America, Youngstown, Ohio; the Newark Museum; the Montclair Art Museum; and the National Academy of Design Museum.

Even after his retirement in 1989, Gorman remained active in the art world, continuing to serve on juries for art organizations throughout the U.S. and delivering his art slide programs on "The Search for Subject Matter" and "Watercolor, the American Medium."

Surviving is his wife, Jan (nee Echols) Gary Gorman.

Biography from New Jersey Gallery:
William Gorman lived from 1925 to 2005, spending most of his life in Jersey City and then Bayonne, N.J.  He worked almost exclusively in casein.  He considered himself a realist but there are definite elements of cubism, abstraction and certainly modernism in most of his work.

His palette generally went from bright and bolder (during the 1950s) to darker and subdued tones in the 1960s and 1970s, while retaining his stylistic identity throughout his life.  He was a skilled draftsman and did many pen and ink drawings that carried his technical and stylistic approach in depicting subject matter over to his paintings.  He also did many woodcuts with owls and old buildings being among his favorite subjects.

His work is in numerous museums including Butler Institute, Newark Museum, Jersey City Museum, National Academy of Design, Springfield Missouri Museum, Canton Art Institute, George Washington Carver Museum, U.S. Department of State, Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center, and Norfolk Museum of Arts & Sciences.

He was featured in the October, 1970 American Artist magazine in an article written by Henry Gasser.  He was an Associate of the National Academy, and was a member of Allied Artists of America,  New Jersey Water Color Society, Philadelphia Water Color Club and National Society of Painters in Casein.

The artist in his own words spoke of his work in the 1964 issue of Prize-Winning Watercolors, in which one of his paintings was featured:

"The recurrent theme of my work is the interpretation and recording of the passage of time in its relationship to man and the evidence of his being. This I try to communicate by depicting man and his structures...old houses,buildings, signboards, deserted motion picture theaters, amusement parks, bridges, storefronts... all the aspects of the city monuments erected by man for man.

Being born and reared in the city, I do work which naturally reflects and is motivated by my particular environment. The destruction in the so-called name of progress of these old and memory-laden structures causes me a sense of sadness and regret, a nostalgia for the passing of a by-gone era.

If a particular emphasis seems to be placed on theme and subject, this is intentional, For my purposes, the subject and its mood are the first consideration.  Everything else is subordinated to the feeling of the subject."

Biography from Butler Institute of American Art:
Painter; Graphic Artist

Born : Jersey City, NJ June 27, 1925

Education : Newark School of Fine and Industrial Arts.

Holdings : Newark Museum; Butler Institute of American Art; Montclair Art Museum

Exhibits : Philadelphia Art Alliance; State of New Jersey Department of Education; US. Department of State Art in Embassies Program.

Awards : Mary Lou FitzGerald Award from Allied Artists of America; Mary S. Litt Medal from American Watercolor Society.

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