Fremont Ellis, Painter
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Fremont Ellis was a Santa Fe painter, printmaker, teacher and founder of the Santa Fe group known as Los Cincos Pintores. The other members were Bakos, Mruk, Nash, and Shuster. Ellis was the most conservative of the group.
Fremont Ellis (1897-1985) was a respected citizen of Santa Fe, where he had lived and worked since 1919. Shortly after his arrival, he joined with Willard Nash, Jozef Bakos, Walter Mruk, and Will Shuster to form one of Santa Fe's earliest artist groups, Los Cincos Pintores. Although the members of the group built houses adjacent to one another's on the Camino Del Monte Sol and maintained a close friendship all their lives, the association was one of convenience and shared interest, not one based on a common painting style. Ellis' intimate knowledge of the land of the Southwest is reflected in his painting. These won many prizes, beginning in 1924 when he received the Huntington Award for landscape at the Los Angeles County Museum. Primarily a self-taught artist, Ellis studied briefly at the Art Students League in New York in 1925. His admirers agree that one of the most important elements of his paintings, whatever their subject, is light—the dry, glowing light of the desert. This emphasis on light is undoubtedly a result of both the physical character of the Southwest and Ellis' avowed admiration for the American Impressionists.
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