Biografie von William Aiken WALKER (1838-1921)

Birth place: Charleston, SC

Death place: Charleston, SC

Addresses: New Orleans, active 1876-1905; Charleston, SC

Profession: Genre, portrait, and landscape painter

Studied: Düsseldorf, 1860s, but mostly self-taught.

Exhibited: South Carolina Institute Fair, 1850 (at the age of 12); Courtenay's Bookstore, Charleston, 1858-59; Baltimore, 1870; Montgomery's, New Orleans, 1876; Southern Art Union, 1880; Boston AC, 1881; Blessing's, New Orleans, 1883, 1885; Lilienthal's, New Orleans, 1883; Seebold's, New Orleans, 1884; American Expo, 1885-86; Savannah, GA, after 1885; Artist's Assoc. of N.O., 1885-1905; Tulane Univ., 1892; Columbian Expo, Chicago, 1893; Louisiana Purchase Expo, 1903.

Member: Wednesday Club, Baltimore, 1865; Artist's Assoc. of New Orleans, 1890, 1893, 1897, 1899; Cup & Saucer Club

Work: Historic New Orleans Coll.; BMFA; Rosenberg Lib., Galveston, TX

Comments: A prolific painter whose works are nostalgic and romantic fictions of antebellum plantation life. He started painting and exhibiting at a young age, and by 1860 was painting the fish and game that he caught. During the Civil War he served the Confederacy as a cartographer, afterwards settling in Baltimore as an artist, but he was actually an itinerant bachelor and dandy. He traveled extensively throughout the South during most winters, maintaining a summer studio in Arden, NC. Between 1876 and 1905, he returned to New Orleans almost every year and mass-produced small paintings depicting black cotton pickers which he hawked on New Orleans street corners as souvenirs for 50¢-$3 each. He also painted fish and game, and sold these paintings through the exclusive hunting and fishing lodges that he established himself in the South. In 1884, two of his large paintings, The Levee-New Orleans" (1883) and "A Cotton Plantation on the Mississippi" (1883) were reproduced as chromolithographs by Currier & Ives. After 1890, he also painted landscapes.

Sources: G&W; Bland Galleries, Exhibition of Southern Genre Paintings by William Aiken Walker, catalogue; Rutledge, Artists in the Life of Charleston; Karolik Cat.; Portfolio (April 1946), 186-87; Art News (Oct. 1949), 40; American Heritage (Autumn 1950), 55; Encyclopaedia of New Orleans Artists, 398-399; August P. Trovailoli and Roulhac D. Toledano, William Aiken Walker: Southern Genre Painter (1972); Trey Ellis, "Song of the South" in Art & Antiques (April, 1987, p.92); Baigell, Dictionary; Complementary Visions, 22."

Rechtliche Ausschlüsse