BAY SHANTIES, SAN FRANCISCO, 1950
Oil on Canvas
18¾ x 25½ Inches
Signed Lower Right
Born in Salt Lake City, Utah, Gordon Cope became a portrait and landscape painter and teacher. A student with A.B. Wright and La Conte Stewart from 1916 to 1923 in Utah and peers with Lawrence Squires in Arizona from 1923 to 1924, Cope also studied abroad from 1924 to 1928. In Europe, he studied the Old Masters in museums in England, France, Switzerland, Italy, Belgium and Holland. In Cope's last year, he was a student at the Julian Academy in Paris and exhibited at the 1928 Paris Salon. Returning to Utah, Cope painted portraits of notables and became involved in education, starting and heading the art department at Latter Day Saints University until 1931, teaching with the Mountain School of Art and serving as Director at the Art Barn School until the early forties. Working with the WPA as one of the original ten artists, Cope worked in the Utah Public Works of Art Project under the Federal Emergency Relief Administration, focusing on early Native American life as a part of a mural project for the state capitol. After moving to California, Cope became known for his "vigorous impressionistic realism. [Cope's] Sierra Snow Scene, painted when he was seventy-two years old, has a scale, boldness and subtlety usually lost by older artists" (Swanson, 182).
Vern Swanson, Robert Olpin, William Seifrit, Utah Art; Peggy and Harold Samuels, The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Artists of the American West; Who Was Who in American Art, Falk, Vol. 1, pg. 730; Benezit, Dictionnaire des Peintres, Sculpteurs, Dessinateurs, et Graveurs, Vol. 3 p. 860; et al.
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