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Frank Rehn    Click Images to Enlarge

Oscar Adler
Along the American Coast

Oil on canvas
16 1/16 x 27 inches

Oscar Adler

(American, 1848-1914)

A highly successful 19th-century marine painter, Frank Rehn determined to be exclusively American in his fine art painting, although French Impressionism heavily influenced his style.  Ironically he was "one of the first Americans to introduce the Impressionist style of painting to his fellow countrymen." Because of his dedication to being 'pure' American, he avoided going abroad for further art study beyond his schooling from age 18 at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts with Christian Schussele.  His course work included portraiture, marine, still life and figure painting and although he could paint any subject, he preferred to paint along the American shore.

Rehn was born in Philadelphia.  After finishing his training at the Pennsylvania Academy, he supported himself with portrait commission work and by selling terra cotta plates.  He also painted many landscapes and still lifes, and won exhibition awards for these subjects.  However, a trip to the New Jersey shore turned his interest to marine painting, especially seascapes.  It is likely that a major influence was the suggestion of fellow artist Russell Smith that Rehn focus on marine painting.

He moved to New York City in 1881, and with other artists set up a studio at the Hotel Chelsea, a location he occupied for the remainder of his life.  Painting with Childe Hassam, John Twachtman and William Merritt Chase, he summered in Magnolia, Massachusetts where he died in 1914.

Memberships included the American Watercolor Society, Associate (1898) and National Academician (1909) of the National Academy of Design, Salmagundi Club and Lotus Club. The artist was awarded First Prize, St. Louis Exposition, 1881; Honorable Mention, Paris Universal Exposition, 1900; and a Bronze Medal, Pan-American Exposition, Buffalo, New York, 1901.