William F. Reese
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oil on linen
16 x 20 inches
oil on linen
24 x 24 inches
Lights over Hurricane
oil on linen
11 x 14 inches
About William F. Reese
William F. Reese, internationally renowned artist, died in June 2010. He leaves behind an astonishing body of work in a wide variety of media as well as instructional books. Reese celebrated the Northwest with majestic landscapes, delicate still lifes, and chronicles of the lives of the men, women and creatures that inhabited the area.
Born in South Dakota and raised in Central Washington, Reese painted for over 50 years. He started drawing at age 3 or 4 and began painting in oil at age 12. After high school, Reese studied fine art at Washington State College and then at the Art Center School of Design in Los Angeles. He worked as a sign painter and a sign pictorial artist for thirteen years in Washington, Oregon, and California while he was building a following for his easel paintings. In 1971, he left the sign business to work full time in his studio in Bellevue, Washington, where he also taught drawing and painting privately. His studio was in Wenatchee, Washington, where he is survived by his wife, Frances.
In the course of his lifetime, Reese mastered a number of media: watercolor, pastel, oil, drawings, lithographs, etchings and sculpture. However, Reese is perhaps best known as one of America's premier plein air artists reveling in the majesty of the Northwest. Working from live models and in the field, Reese relied heavily on personal observation each work a personal statement from and about his life. Reese's work has been shown throughout the United States and in many exhibitions abroad. His work was included in the first exhibition of contemporary art from the western world in mainland China upon China's reopening.
Over the past 35 years, Reese's work has been written about in numerous art magazines . He was the subject of an award winning book by Mary N. Balcomb entitled, Wm. F. Reese, American Artist, published in 1984. Reese and his work are also featured in the book, Masterworks of American Art, written by Arlene Kirkpatrick in 1985.
Reese has received many national and regional awards including the Robert Lougheed Gold Medal from the National Western Heritage Museum, two silver medals from the National Parks Academy for the Arts, and the Best of Show Colonel Smith Award from the National Wildlife Art Museum.