Particularly known for his portraits and views of Martha's Vineyard, Wright actively pursued a lifelong interest in art, while at the same time serving as an economic specialist for the military government in Germany after World War II, among others.
Born to railway executive Frank C. Wright and his wife Carol Butler Wright in Cincinnati, Ohio in 1904, he graduated from the Gilman School in Baltimore, Maryland and Yale University in Fine Arts. He then attended the Ecole des Beaux Arts in Paris.
Wright began his working career as vice president of the Philadelphia and Reading Coal and Iron Company, and was invited by the U.S. Government in 1946 to become an economic advisor tio the European Recovery Program, the predecessor to the Marshall Plan. From 1950 to 1955 he was head of public relations for Radio Free Europe, based in New York. During this time he also wrote a book about Communist psychological warfare in the United States, entitled The Queer Fish.
In 1955, he actively turned to painting and served for 15 years as president of the American Artists' Professional League in New York City. He was also president of the Council of American Artists Societies, and founding member and president of the Hudson Valley Art Association. He frequently testified before Senate committees responsible for appropriations for the arts.
A color theorist, he traveled widely and taught painting in New York, Florida and Edgartown, Massachusetts. He painted landscapes in Tuscany, Venice, Ireland, Germany, and, for over twenty years, he painted Martha's Vineyard. His work was frequently exhibited on the Island as well as in Boston at the Copley Society. A mural painter, he painted a mural in St. Louis, showing their Gateway-to-the-West.
Frank C. Wright, Jr. was a member of the Whiffenpoofs at Yale University, and served as a member of the board of the American Opera Society in New York.
He and his wife divided their time between Delray Beach, Florida and Edgartown, Massachusetts, where he died August 17, 1982.
Obituary, Vineyard Gazette, August 20, 1982
other issues of the Vineyard Gazette between 1950 and 1982
Information courtesy of Tony Tobia