Thomas Casilear Cole ( American, 1888 - 1976 )


Portrait of a Lady

Oil on Canvas, Signed ( l.r. ) "T. Casilear Cole 1909"

21" x 17 1/4"

Price Available Upon Request

Thomas Casilear Cole, painter and teacher, was born in Staatsburg-on-Hudson, New York on July 23, 1888 and died in 1976.  In 1929 he was living at the Hotel Chelsea, 222 West 23rd Street in New York City.  He was actively earning his living as an artist from the early 1900s to the 1970s and was a portrait painter from early on.  Cole taught at the Traphagen School of Art, portrait and figure painting at the School of Fine and the Industrial Arts in New York City, and portrait painting at the Phoenix Art Institute, NYC.  Cole worked as a WPA artist, illustrator, and he served in United States Navy from 1917 to 1919.

Cole attended the Riverview Military Academy in Poughkeepsie, New York from 1900 to 1904 and Harvard University in 1905.  He studied at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (SMFA) from 1905 to 1911 under Edmund Charles Tarbell (1862-1938), Frank Weston Benson (1862-1951), and Philip Leslie Hale (1865-1934).  In 1912 Cole was in Paris studying with Jean Paul Laurens (1838-1921) at the Académie Julian in Paris and Atelier Baschet.

His memberships include the Rockport Art Association; the Society Descendants of the Founders of Hartford, the Poetry Society of America, and the American Veterans Society of Artists.

Some of Coles' many exhibitions include the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts (PAFA), 1911; the Boston Art Club (BAC), 1911; the National Academy of Design (NAD), 1911; the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, 1913; the Copley Society, 1913; the Art Institute if Chicago (AIC), 1915; the San Francisco Exposition, 1915; the Berlin Gallery in NYC, 1915; solo shows at the Knoedler Gallery in 1915 and 1917; the San Francisco Art Museum, 1919; the Rochester Museum, 1917; the Anderson Gallery, NYC, 1919; the Art Center, NYC, 1920; the Norfolk Art Society, VA, 1921; the Allied Artists of America; Ehrich Gallery, 1921; the Women's University Club, NYC, 1922; the Paris Salon, 1923; the City Club, NY, 1924; the Marie Sterner Gallery, 1926; the Ainslie Gallery, 1927; the Rockport Art Association, 1930; the Albright Art Gallery, 1931; the 56th Street Gallery, 1931; the Cosmopolitan Club, NY, 1937; the Veterans Society of Artists, 1942; the Ogunquit Art Center, 1945-55; the National Arts Club (NAC), NYC, 1945; Portraits Inc., 1970s; the Parson's School of Design, 1970; and New York City WPA Art.

Cole's work can be seen in the collections of the San Francisco Museum of Fine Art; the New York Bar Association; the Brooklyn Public Library; the Newton Theological Seminary; Trinity College, Hartford; the Butler Institute of American Art (portrait of Dorothy); Duke University, NC (portrait of William S. Halsted); the Virginia Historical Society, Richmond, VA (portrait of Walter Heron Taylor, 1838-1916); Tennessee Historical Society, Nashville (portrait of Judge Samuel C. Williams). His commissioned works include the Federal Courthouse, NYC (portrait of Judge Alfred C. Cox, 1920); the Vermont State Capitol, Montpelier (portrait of Governor Stickney, 1921; the Massachusetts Supreme Court, Boston (portrait of Judge Edward P. Pierce. 1930); the Father Mathew Society, Salem, MA (portrait of Father Mathew, 1940); the Hood Museum of Art Dartmouth College, Hanover, NH (portrait of Curtis H. Page, 1928); the Edwin A. Ulrich Museum of Art, Wichita State University, KS (portrait of the Countess of Fontenailles and a portrait of Sir John Robertson as Hamlet) and a portrait of President James K. Polk, commissioned by the State of Tennessee and presented to the United States Naval Academy, Annapolis, MD, 1945.

Who Was Who in American Art, 1999, page 692; Davenport's Art Reference, 2006/2007Edition, page 465; Mantle Fielding, 1986, page 165; Mallett, page 84; Dealer's Choice Biographical Encyclopedia of American Painters... 2002 pages 278-79; Artists of the Rockport Art Association, 1940, page 39; New York Genealogical & Biographical Society; Smithsonian Institution Research Information System.

Museums (3):  Thomas Cole  

Butler Institute of American Art

Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco-Legion of Honor

Virginia Historical Society