Emile A. Gruppe
An outdoor painting class in Gloucester
Photograph: Emilie Gruppe Alexander
Drying the Sails
Evening Light Gloucester
Emile A. Gruppé (1896-1978) painted views of Gloucester’s harbor at all times of day, taking great delight in conveying aspects of light and air, as well as a sense of place. Art historians refer to him as a Regionalist painter whose work was informed by as Realism, Tonalism and Impressionism. However He would quickly have dismissed these art historical labels and our tendency to categorize artists by their style. This isn’t surprising in view of the fact that Gruppé had a reputation as a boisterous extrovert whose goal, besides creating a beautiful work of art, was to infuse his paintings with aspects of his own character––hence his advice to his students to “have a good time when you paint”.
As he informed his readers in Gruppé on Color, good art wasn’t just a matter of technique and motif; rather it was personality, too. You paint the way you’re made. And the viewer, looking at your pictures, is interested because he senses your mind and emotions at work . . . If you’re bold and outgoing, your work will show it. If you’re small-minded and grasping, your work will show that too. (Carol Lowrey at spanierman.files.wordpress.com)
Emile Gruppé was born in 1896, the son of renowned painter Charles Gruppe. He studied with George Bridgman, at the Art Students League, at the National Academy of Design, in Woodstock NY under John F. Carlson, and in Massachusetts with Charles Hawthorne, Richard Miller, and George Chapman. He was a member of the Salmagundi Club, North Shore Art Association, Gloucester Society of Art, Rockport Art Association, Longboat Key Art Association, Sarasota, St. Augustine Art Academy, and the Woodstock Art Association.
Gruppé is best known for his impressionistic renderings of fishing boats docked at Gloucester and Rockport, and his Florida scenes where he wintered. In 1942, he founded the Gruppe Summer School in Gloucester.
A stream winding through a sunlit forest
Woman Gardening, Naples, Florida
Florida Skies over the Everglades
Sunset over Hurricane Pass, Marco Island
Gruppé died in 1978 at the age of 82. In one of his last interviews he revealed his philosophy of painting: "If you want exacting details in a painting, than you might as well look at a photograph. I make an impression on a canvas, and let one's imagination fill in the details."