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  • Alma B. Wright

Alma B. Wright

A. B. Wright was born in Salt Lake City in 1875. A contemporary of Lee Greene Richards, he exhibited his artwork in early-century Paris salons. He died in France in 1952.

Wright studied at Latter-day Saints College (1892–95) and at the University of Utah (1895–96) where his instructors were J. T. Harwood and Herman Haag.He then left for Paris where he studied at the Académie Julian, and at the Académie Colorissi.

In the 1920s he painted murals for the temples of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Arizona, Canada, and Hawaii.  Quai Pontoise (1930) and Old Farm in Coleville (1926) are an example of his work from this period.

Biography adapted from Artists of Utah.

A. B. Wright of Salt Lake City and Le Bugh, France was born and raised on the same city block as Lee Green Richards and Mahonri Young and became a fellow exhibitor in early century Paris Salon with them. In the 1880s, Wright began studying with Ottinger then went to school at L.D.S. college, the University of Utah, and the Ecole des Beaux-Arts and the Academy Colarossi in Paris. Developing a rather admirable “Whistlerian“ portrait style, Wright also became the painter of every pleasing and rather distinctive landscape scenes as well as some fine and interesting murals in Utah and Mormon temples elsewhere. Returning from Europe in 1904 he became an entirely successful art professional and Department Chair at Brigham Young College in Logan, then L.D.S. college and finally the University of Utah in 1931. The highly respected A. B. Wright was an extremely active and enterprising head of U. of U. program; but during his prime in 1937-38, he was forced to retire from the university for undisclosed reasons. This talented painter and teacher then went to France, never to return to this area.

Biography courtesy Artists of Utah

Books

Collins, Jim L. Women Artists in America: Eighteenth Century to the Present. Chattanooga, TN: J.L. Collins, 1973.

Davenport, Ray. Davenport's Art Reference. Ventura, CA: Davenport's Art Reference, 2001.

Dawdy, Doris. Artists of the American West: A Biographical Dictionary. Chicago, IL: Sage Books, 1990.

Dunbier, Lonnie Pierson, ed. The Artists Bluebook: 29,000 North American Artists. Scottsdale, AZ: AskART.com, 2003.

Falk, Peter Hastings. Who Was Who in American Art: Compiled from the Original thirty-four Volumes of American Art Annual: Who's Who in Art, Biographies of American Artists Active from 1898-1947. Madison, CT: Sound View Press, 1985.

Falk, Peter Hastings. Who Was Who in American Art, 1564-1975: 400 Years of Artists in America. Madison, CT: Sound View Press, 1999.

Fielding, Mantle, and Glenn B. Opitz. Mantle Fielding's Dictionary of American Painters, Sculptors & Engravers. 2nd ed. Poughkeepsie, NY: Apollo, 1986.

Gerdts, William H. Art Across America: Two Centuries of Regional Painting, 1710-1920. New York, NY: Abbeville Press, 1990.

Haseltine, James L. 100 Years of Utah Painting: Selected Works from the 1840s to the 1940s. Salt Lake City, UT: Salt Lake Art Center, 1965.

Mallett, Daniel Trowbridge. Index of Artists, International-Biographical; Including Painters, Sculptors, Illustrators, Engravers and Etchers of the Past and the Present. NY: Peregrine Smith Publishers, 1948.

Olpin, Robert S., William C. Seifrit, Vera G. Swanson. Artists of Utah. Salt Lake City, UT: Gibbs Smith Publisher, 1999.

Samuels, Peggy and Harold Samuels. The Illustrated Biographical Encyclopedia of Artists of the American West. Garden City, NY: Doubleday, 1976.

Springville Museum of Art. Permanent Collection Catalog. Springville, UT: Springville Museum of Art, 1972.

Swanson, Vern G., Robert S. Olpin, and William C. Seifrit. Utah Painting and Sculpture. Layton, UT: Gibbs Smith Publisher, 1991.

Swanson, Vern G., Robert S. Olpin, and William C. Seifrit. Utah Art. Layton, UT: Peregrine Smith Books, 1992.

Swanson, Vern G., Robert S. Olpin, Donna Poulton, and Janie Rogers. Utah Art, Utah Artists. Layton, UT: Gibbs Smith Publisher, 2001.

 Last Modified 5/6/14