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 Robert Lewis Reid  (1862 - 1929)

About: Robert Lewis Reid
 

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Lived/Active: Massachusetts      Known for: mural, contemplative female, landscape

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Ad Code: 2
Robert Lewis Reid
from Auction House Records.
A Breezy Day
Artwork images are copyright of the artist or assignee
This biography from the Archives of AskART:
American impressionist Robert Reid was born in Stockbridge, Massachusetts in 1862. He studied at the Boston Museum of Fine Arts School, the Art Students League in New York, and at the Academie Julian, in Paris, with Gustave Boulanger and Jules Lefebvre. Reid exhibited at the Paris Salon, the 1893 Columbian Expo in Chicago, the Paris Expo, the Pan-American Expo, and the St. Louis Expo, winning prizes and medals.

A painter of landscape, figures, still-lifes and murals, Reid was in 1897 one of the founding members of the Ten American Painters, a group of Impressionists who rebelled against traditionalism. He had spent many of his summers painting in Normandy while studying in France in the late 1880s. He returned to New York in 1889 and in 1892, received the commission to decorate one of the eight entrance pavilion domes in the Liberal Arts Building for the 1893 World's Columbian Exhibition in Chicago. Following this period, he received throughout his career important mural commissions in New York including ones for the Fifth Avenue Hotel and the Imperial Hotel. He also continued his easel work.

Reid's painting, "Woman with a Vase of Irises," c. 1906, typifies his Impressionist style with his handling of high-hues, values and little contrast of lights and darks. This painting is also typical of his subject matter, which was idealized young women sitting in landscapes and holding or carrying flowers. In this painting, a young woman with a wistful expression, dressed in a voluminous, loose-fitting white house dress, sits on a porch railing, her hands on a large foreground vase of flowers. Loosely painted Impressionist foliage fills the entire background closely behind her.

About 1910, he began a group of paintings showing women dressed in Japanese kimonos set in brilliantly colored interiors with Oriental screens.

In the early 1920s, Reid moved to Colorado Springs where he joined the faculty of the Broadmoor Academy. During this time, he focused more on portrait commissions, "creating what he called 'portrait impressions' by quickly painting in only the essential forms and features in broad, vigorous brush strokes." (Falk)

In 1927, Reid was partially paralyzed by a stroke and spent the last two years of his life in a New York State sanitorium where he learned to paint with his left hand.

His work is included in the permanent collections of many public institutions including the Detroit Institute of Arts. Reid was a member of the Society of American Artists and the National Academy of Design (Associate, 1902; Academician, 1906).

He died in Clifton Springs, New York in 1929.

Sources include:
Peter Falk, "Who Was Who in American Art"
http://www.thistlefineart.com/Reid.htm
http://www.doupine.com/reid.htm






Biography from David Cook Galleries (M-Z):
Robert Reid was born in Massachusetts in 1862. He studied at Phillips Academy and the Boston Museum School. In 1884 he left for New York to study at the Art Students League, within a year he grew antsy and left for Paris to attend the Academie Julian. He returned to the states in 1889.

In 1897 Reid became one of the founding members of the Ten American Painters, a group of Impressionists who rebelled against traditionalism; exhibiting together for twenty years. Reid completed numerous murals over the course of his career, including commissions for the Chicago World's Columbian Exposition in 1892; the American Pavilion at the 1900 Paris Exposition, the Fine Arts Building at the Panama-Pacific Exposition in San Francisco in 1915; and in New York at St. Paul's Roman Catholic Church, the Imperial Hotel, the Fifth Avenue Hotel, many private residences and even an ocean liner.

In the early 1920s, Reid moved to Colorado Springs where he joined the faculty of the Broadmoor Academy. He taught here from 1920-1927 and was instrumental in establishing and defining the academy. During this time, he focused more on portrait commissions, "creating what he called 'portrait impressions' by quickly painting in only the essential forms and features in broad, vigorous brush strokes." (Falk). Reid’s impressionist style consisted of high-hues, values and little contrast of lights and darks.

In 1927, Reid was partially paralyzed by a stroke and spent the last two years of his life in a New York State sanitorium where he learned to paint with his left hand.

His work is included in the permanent collections of many public institutions. Reid was a member of the Society of American Artists and the National Academy of Design (Associate, 1902; Academician, 1906).

He died in Clifton Springs, New York in 1929.

Biography from Owen Gallery:
Although Robert Reid was born and raised in Massachusetts, and was an early practitioner of the Impressionist technique, he was never drawn into the Boston School of painters lead by Edmund Tarbell. Instead, after having studied at Phillips Academy and the Boston Museum School, Reid departed for New York in 1884 in order to study at the Art Students League. However, by the fall of the following year, Reid set sail for Paris to study at the Academie Julian. Reid returned to the United States, settling in New York in 1889.

Reid supported himself as a portraitist and teacher until 1892, when he also began accepting mural commissions. Reid completed numerous murals over the course of his career, including commissions for the Chicago World's Columbian Exposition in 1892; the American Pavilion at the 1900 Paris Exposition, the Fine Arts Building at the Panama-Pacific Exposition in San Francisco in 1915; and in New York at St. Paul's Roman Catholic Church, the Imperial Hotel, the Fifth Avenue Hotel, many private residences and even an ocean liner.

Although mural assignments claimed much of his time and energy, Reid also executed many easel paintings--his favorite theme being beautiful young women in flowering gardens. Reid is well-remembered for his membership in "The Ten", America's premier group of Impressionist painters who exhibited together annually for twenty years from 1898 to 1919.

After suffering a stroke which paralyzed his right side, Reid retired to a sanitarium in Clifton Springs, New York where he died in 1929.

Owen Gallery credits this information to: "Impressionism in America: The Ten American Painters" by Ulrich W. Hiesinger.

** If you discover credit omissions or have additional information to add, please let us know at registrar@AskART.com.


Robert Reid is also mentioned in these AskART essays:
Impressionists Pre 1940
San Francisco Panama-Pacific Exhibition 1915
Paris Pre 1900
"The Ten"



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