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 Walter Blakelock Wilson  (1929 - 2011)

About: Walter Blakelock Wilson
 

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Lived/Active: Colorado/Arizona      Known for: portraits and landscape painting, stage and scenic design

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Ad Code: 4
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from Auction House Records.
Hill Town
Artwork images are copyright of the artist or assignee
This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Following is the obituary of the artist, published in The Gazette, Colorado Springs, December 25, 2011.

Walter Blakelock Wilson passed away Dec. 16, 2011, at his home in Tubac, AZ surrounded by his family. He was 82 years old. An accomplished American painter, his art spans 66 years, an illustrious body of work that earns him a distinct place in American art history.

Born in 1929, he was raised in upstate New York, where as a young boy, he was strongly influenced by the paintings of his great grandfather, Ralph Albert Blakelock, one of the most unique of the 19th century Hudson River School painters. Wilson graduated with honors in fine arts from Colgate University in 1951. He trained in portrait painting in the tradition of John Singer Sargent and Leopold Seyffert. In 1952, he married the love of his life, Patricia May Steele.

During the Korean War, he flew C-46 troop carriers. He was assigned to paint portraits of generals and a monumental mural of the history of the United States Air Force.  In 1956, Wilson settled with his family in Colorado Springs.  In 1957, he was appointed Art Master for Fountain Valley School, where he developed and headed the Art Department and Art Gallery for 26 years. He earned his master's degree in art at Colorado College in 1964.

Wilson's artwork is represented in over 300 corporate and private collections. He has been featured in numerous museum exhibitions and solo shows. His portrait of Alice Bemis Taylor hangs in the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center. Wilson designed sets for the Cripple Creek Melodrama, the Colorado Springs Opera, Colorado Symphony Orchestra, and the Colorado Music Hall.

Wilson founded the commercial art enterprise LeaseArt in 1976 and The Art Bank and Oriental Rug Center in 1980. In 1988, Walter and Patty moved to Tubac, AZ, where they opened Old World Imports. He loved to play golf, tennis, and to fly his airplane. He traveled with his wife on art-filled adventures to Europe, Turkey, Pakistan, Uzbekistan, Morocco, and India. Recently, he was inducted into the Fountain Valley School Arts Guild, and the book Walter Blakelock Wilson, An American Artist, 66 Years of Painting was published.

Wilson is survived by his wife, Patricia, six children: Polly Schlitz, Eva Jackson (George), Richard Wilson (Michelle), Blake Wilson (Kathy), Myra Platt (David Ellis), Lincoln Wilson, (Paula), 12 grandchildren, and 5 great-grandchildren. He is also survived by his brother, Earl Wilson (Karen), 6 nephews and nieces including Wendy Dickson, Scott Dickson (Babbi) and Shari Dickson Jones (Chad) of Colorado Springs.

He was preceded in death by his sister Jean Dickson. Donations in Wilson's honor can be made to Fountain Valley School of Colorado, The Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center or The Tubac Center for the Arts.

Submitted by Blake Wilson

Biography from Best of the West Auctions:

Walter Wilson was born in 1929, in Auburn, NY.  He graduated with honors in Fine Arts from Colgate University in 1951.  In 1952 he married his wife Patty and became an Air Force pilot. Wilson flew C-46 Troop Carrier aircraft in the Korean War and painted Air Force murals, portraits of generals, and character studies of local people while stationed in Japan durring the war.

He earned a Masters Degree in art at Colorado College in 1964.  While in Colorado Springs he headed the art Department for 27 years at the prestigious Fountain Valley School, following the terms of important artists Boardman Robinson and Jean Charlot.  Besides teaching art, Wilson specialized in portrait painting, landscapes, stage and scenic design, and custom artwork for corporations. 

He is represented in over 300 collections and his work has been in numerous museum exhibitions, the permanent collection of the Colorado Springs Fine Art Center, one-man shows, and has received Best of Show awards and other honors. 

In 1988 he moved his studio to Tubac, AZ.

Source: Data obtained directly from his sons.


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