Freemont Ellis

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FREEMONT ELLIS (Am. 1897-1985)

Born in Virginia City, Montana, Ellis was reared in El Paso and studied about three months in 1911 at the Art Students League of New York, his only formal training. He attended optometry school hoping to earn a living in his father’s El Paso optical store, then operated a frame shop while he continued to paint and taught occasionally. The shop failed and in 1919 Ellis moved to Santa Fe. He lived in California for a brief period, returning to Santa Fe in 1921 when he joined four others (Josef Bakos, Walter Mruk, Willard Nash, and Will Shuster) in forming Los Cinso Pintores (1921 - 1926). He became a very popular painter and traveled throughout the Southwest making sketches and studies for his landscapes. In 1983 Ellis received the Governor’s Arts Award for his contributions to New Mexico arts, and in 1985 the New Mexico Magazine selected a group of his works to illustrate its New Mexico calendar. Ellis died in Santa Fe.

Source: Texas Painters, Sculptors & Graphic Artists by John and Deborah Powers

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