1880 – 1956
Theme/Style – Impressionism, Modernism, figurative works, portraits, landscapes
Media – Oils, pastels, Conté crayon, etchings
Artistic Focus – Lee Randolph was a highly respected artist and teacher in the San Francisco Bay Area throughout the first half of the 20th century. His many years of study in Europe imbued his paintings with a quiet light and unusual, soft color and texture that set him apart from his contemporaries, while still being very much in step with the movement toward Modernism in the art community of his day.
Career Highlights –
- Lee Fritz Randolph was born in Ravenna, Ohio, in 1880. He studied at the Stevenson Art School in Pittsburgh, at the Cincinnati Art Academy under Frank Duveneck and Thomas Noble, and at the Art Students League in New York under Kenyon Cox and George Bridgman.
- Randolph went on to spend 10 years studying in Europe, both in Rome and in Paris at the Académie Julian under Jean Paul Laurens and at the École des Beaux Arts under Léon Bonnat and Luc-Olivier Merson.
- After visiting California in 1909, Randolph settled there in 1913, living briefly on the Monterey Peninsula and subsequently in San Francisco. There he became a member of the Bohemian Club and the California Society of Etchers, and in 1915 he exhibited at the city’s Panama-Pacific International Exposition, receiving a bronze medal.
- Randolph was an instructor at the University of California Berkeley in 1915-1916, and in 1917 was appointed director of San Francisco’s California School of Fine Arts, a position he would hold for the next 25 years, while also teaching life drawing at the school.
- Randolph was a familiar figure and very much a part of the growing Modernist art scene in San Francisco, and a caricature of him by Yun Gee was in included in Gee’s exhibition at the Modern Gallery in 1926. Also a nationally recognized etcher, Randolph served on the jury of the International Print Maker’s Show in Los Angeles in 1924.
- Through the 1920s, 1930s and 1940s Randolph exhibited frequently and continued to win many prizes, in San Francisco at the San Francisco Art Association, the Beaux Arts Gallery, the Bohemian Club, the California Palace of the Legion of Honor, the San Francisco Museum of Art Inaugural in 1935, and the Golden Gate International Exposition in 1939; as well as at the Oakland Art Gallery, the California State Fair, the Del Monte Art Gallery in Monterey, and in France at the Paris Salon.
- Randolph retired to Carmel, California, where he was active in the city’s Art Association. He passed away in nearby Salinas in 1956.
Bibliographic references are available upon request.