Charles Demuth
1883–1935

Introduction

Charles Henry Buckius Demuth (November 8, 1883 – October 23, 1935) was an American painter who specialized in watercolors and turned to oils late in his career, developing a style of painting known as Precisionism.

"Search the history of American art," wrote Ken Johnson in The New York Times, "and you will discover few watercolors more beautiful than those of Charles Demuth. Combining exacting botanical observation and loosely Cubist abstraction, his watercolors of flowers, fruit and vegetables have a magical liveliness and an almost shocking sensuousness."

Demuth was a lifelong resident of Lancaster, Pennsylvania. The home he shared with his mother is now the Demuth Museum, which showcases his work. He graduated from Franklin & Marshall Academy before studying at Drexel University and at Philadelphia's Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts. While he was a student at PAFA, he participated in a show at the academy, and also met William Carlos Williams at his boarding house. The two were fast friends and remained close for the rest of their lives.

He later studied at Académie Colarossi and Académie Julian in Paris, where he became a part of the avant garde art scene. The Parisian artistic community was accepting of Demuth's homosexuality. After his return to America, Demuth retained aspects of Cubism in many of his works.

Wikidata identifier

Q380494

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Introduction

Demuth retained a deep attachment to Lancaster, Pennsylvania, where he was born, though he was one of the first American artists to embrace Modernism. He traveled to Europe in 1907-1908, 1912-1914, and 1921. On these trips he encountered Gertrude and Leo Stein, and Ezra Pound in Paris, and was influenced by Cubism. Comment on works: genre, still life

Country of birth

United States

Roles

Artist, author, genre artist, illustrator, painter, theatrical painter

ULAN identifier

500004441

Names

Charles Demuth, Charles Henry Demuth, Demuth, Charles Henry Buckius Demuth

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Information from the Getty Research Institute's Union List of Artist Names ® (ULAN), made available under the ODC Attribution License. Accessed June 11, 2024.