West Fraser was born in Savannah, Ga. in 1955. He is a true “Son of The Lowcountry”, with deep roots dating back to 1695 in Dorchester S.C., to coastal Georgia’s colonial plantation history. He came of age on Hilton Head Island, S.C. where he developed his love of the coastal environs that today still provide him with inspiration. One of the leading American artists in the representational and plein air tradition, he has built his career on richly painted, atmospheric vistas of cities, coasts, and the landscape throughout the United States and internationally—from the pristine Sea Islands of South Carolina and Georgia, to the hill towns of Tuscany. An avid traveler, he has painted throughout the Caribbean, Central America, Europe and Scandinavia. Yet his passion always draws him back to the marshes and landscape of his beloved Georgia and South Carolina Coast.

 

Fraser was a commissioner with the South Carolina Art’s Commission for nine years, he is an elected member of the prestigious Salmagundi Club, a Signature member of PAPA (Plein Air Painters of America) and an artist member of the California Art Club. He garnered his first award in 1984, The John Young Hunter Award from Allied Artists of America in New York City, N.Y. Since then he has been honored with the Award of Excellence from Mystic International, The Mary S. Litt Award from The American Watercolor Society, the Pursuit of Excellence/American Master award from the Hubbard Museum of Art, N.M., and the Edgar Payne Gold Medal from the California Art Club’s 100th Gold Medal Exhibition, California. Fraser’s work hangs in permanent collections of nine museums across the United States, Bermuda,  and is in the permanent collection of  the White House Historical Association.

 

West Fraser has been honored with eight solo museum exhibitions in the Midwest, the Southeast, and California. His most recent museum exhibition was in 2012 at the Telfair Academy of Art Museum in Savannah, Ga.,  A Native Son: Paintings by West Fraser. His paintings have also been included in many juried museum exhibitions nationwide. Fraser has been published extensively, including features in Art & Antiques, Plein Air Magazine, The Robb Report, Charleston Magazine, Sandlapper Magazine, SC Wildlife Magazine, Southern Living, Southern Accents, American Artist, Nautical Quarterly, Southwest Art, US Air Ways, American Art Collector, and most recently a feature in Garden & Gun. Exhibition catalogs and books exists of his work The Color of Light, 1995 Springfield Museum of Art, OH and A Native Son, 2012 Telfair Museum of Art, Savannah, GA. Opening in January 2017 will be Fraser’s ninth one-man show and third one-man show at The Gibbes Museum in Charleston, S.C. In 2000, he represented South Carolina in the bicentennial celebration calendar published by the White House Historic Association. In 2001, the University of South Carolina Press published the monograph Charleston in My Time: The Paintings of West Fraser, which was accompanied by a traveling exhibition to Southeastern museums. In July 2016 Mr. Fraser’s second book from USC Press Painting the Southern Coast: The Art of West Fraser was released featuring paintings from Georgetown, S.C. down to St. Augustine, Fla. capturing many years of painting in his native south. In 2006, Fraser painted the official portrait of SC Governor Mark Sanford. Mr. Fraser currently lives in Mt. Pleasant, SC with his wife Helena Fox.

One-Man Museum Exhibitions

January – April 2017    The Gibbes Museum of Art, Charleston, S.C.

February – May 2012 – Telfair Museum of Art, Savannah, Ga. – A Native Son: Paintings by West Fraser

March – May 2011 – Spartanburg Museum of Arts, Spartanburg, S.C. – West Fraesr: A Southern Perspective

April – June 2007 – Bakersfield Museum of Art, Bakersfield, Ca. – As I See it, Paintings by West Fraser

April – June 2002 – Greenville County Museum of Art, Greenville, S.C. – Paintings of West Fraser, Charleston in My Time

June – Sept. 2002 – Gibbes Museum of Art, Charleston, S.C. – Charleston in My Time, Paintings of West Fraser

October 2002 – Jan. 2003 – Morris Museum of Art, Augusta, Ga. – Charleston in My Time, Paintings of West Fraser

September – October 1995 – Springfield Museum of Art, Springfield, Ohio – The Color of Light, Painting of West Fraser

November 1986 – January 1987 – Gibbes Museum of Art, Charleston, S.C. – Coastal Watercolors by West Fraser

 

Group Museum Exhibitions

Art in the Embassies Program – Ottawa, Canada & Tanzania

Bakersfield Museum of Art – Bakersfield, Ca.

Booth Western Art Museum – Cartersville, Ga.

Clinton Library – Little Rock, Arkanas

Cape Cod Museum of Art – Cape Cod, Mass.

George H. Bush Library – College Station, Texas

Gerald R. Ford Museum – Grand Rapids, Mich.

Gibbes Museum of Art – Charleston, S.C.

Greenville County Museum of Art – Greenville, S.C.

Haggin Museum – Stockton, Ca.

The Hubbard Museum of the American West – Ruidoso Downs, N.M.

Huntsville Museum of Art – Huntsville, Alabama

The Irvine Museum of Art – Irvine, Ca.

The Johnson Library – Austin, Texas

Laguna Art Museum – Laguna, Ca.

Mariner’s Museum – Newport News, Va.

Masterworks Museum Collection – Hamilton Bermuda

Michele & Donald D’Amour Museum of Fine Art – Springfield, Mass.

Minnesota Maritime Museum – Alexandria, M.N.

Morris Museum of Art – Augusta, Ga.

Museum of the Southwest – Midland, Texas

Mystic Seaport – Mystic, Conn.

The Nixon Library – Yorba Linda, Ca.

The Ottawa Art Gallery – Ottawa, Canada

Pasadena Museum of California Art – Pasadena, Ca.

Rutherford B. Hayes Presidential Center – Speigel Grove, Fairmont, Ca.

Salmagundi Club – New York City, N.Y.

South Carolina State Museum – Columbia, S.C.

Springfield Museum of Art – Springfield, Ohio

Washakie Museum – Worland, Wy.

White House Historical Association – Washington, D.C.

Wisconsin Maritime Museum – Manitowoc, Wiss.

 

Permanent Museum Collections

Gibbes Museum of Art – Charleston, S.C.

Greenville Country Museum of Art – Greenville, S.C.

Laguna Art Museum – Laguna, Ca.

Masterworks Museum Collection – Hamilton, Bermuda

Midway Museum – Midway, Ga.

Mission, San Juan Capistrano Museum – Ca.

Morris Museum of Art – Augusta, Ga.

Springfield Museum of Art – Springfield, Ohio

Telfair Museum of Art – Savannah, Ga.

 

Select Private Collections

Mr. and Mrs. Conrad Albert – Bedford, NY & Charleston, SC

Mr. and Mrs. Michael Bennett – Charleston, SC

Mrs. Spotswood Box – Debordieu Colony, SC

Mr. and Mrs. Wayland Cato – Charlotte, NC & Charleston, SC

Mrs. E.B. Chase – Twickingham Plantation, SC

Mr. and Mrs. Jerry Cooper – San Marco, FL

Mr. and Mrs. Berry Edwards – Hilton Head Island, SC

Mr. and Mrs. Stanford Eschner Collection – Bakersfield, CA

Mr. and Mrs. Carlos Evans – Charlotte, NC.

Ms. Gogo Ferguson – Cumberland Island, GA.

Mr. and Mrs. Richard Fudge – Boston, MA

Ms. Yvonne Goolagong – Hilton Head Island, SC.

Mr. Hans Hartman & The Baroness Braunerhjelm Collection – Stockholm, Sweden

Mr. Steve Heyer – New York, NY

Mr. and Mrs. John Hill – Wadmalaw, SC.

Mr. and Mrs. Leo Higdon Collection – Connecticut

Mrs. Martha Ingram – Nashville, TN

Mr. Robert Jetmundsen Collection – Atlanta, GA.

Mr. Billy Joel – New York, NY.

Mr. Bill Jones, III – Sea Island, GA.

The Susu & George Dean Johnson Collection of Southern Art – Spartanburg, SC

Mrs. Patricia Fox Collection – Easton, MD.

Ambassador and Mrs. Phillip Lader – Charleston, SC.

Mr. and Mrs. Per Lofberg – S. Darthmouth, MA

Mr. Leonard Long Collection – Charleston, SC.

The Honorable and Mrs. Robert E. McNair – South Carolina

Mr. and Mrs. Robert Monk, Jr. – Palm Beach Fl.

Mr. and Mrs. Leslie Muma – Belle Air, FL.

Mr. and Mrs. Sumner Pingree – Bray’s Island Plantation, SC.

Mr. and Mrs. Stuart Porter – Wellesley, MA

Mr. and Mrs. Jude Reyes – Chicago, IL.

Mr. John Rivers Collection – Charleston, SC.

Ambassador and Mrs. Robert Royall – Charleston, SC.

Mr. and Mrs. Nelson Schwab – Charlotte, NC.

Mr. and Mrs. Robert Shafer Collection – Mentor, OH.

The Honorable and Mrs. Hulett C. Smith – Beckley, WV.

Ms. Joan Irvine Smith Collection – Irvine, CA.

Mr. and Mrs. Stan Smith – Hilton Head Island, SC.

Mr. and Mrs. Jean Stern Collection – Irvine, CA.

Mr. Steven B. Tanger – New York, NY.

Mr. and Mrs. Sam Vickers Collection – Jacksonville, FL.

General and Mrs. William Childs Westmoreland – Charleston, SC.

Mr. and Mrs. Ron White – Suwanee, GA.

Dr. Louis Wright Collection – Charleston, SC.

 

Corporate and Institutional Collections

Amelia Island Plantation Company – Amelia Island, Fla.

AM South Bank – Birmingham, Alabama

Anson’s Restaurant – Charleston, S.C.

Arizona Bank – Arizona

Bald Head Island Company – North Carolina

Bank of America – Georgia, North & South Carolina

Bower and Knight Yachts – California

Bray’s Island Plantation Collection – South Carolina

Callawassee Plantation – South Carolina

Carolina First Bank – South Carolina

Casa Corcovado – Costa Rica

Cousteau Society – Virginia

Disney Corporation- Florida

Evergreen Lines – Taipei, Taiwan

Fenco – New Jersey

Fraser Yachts – San Diego, California

Heritage Classic Foundation – Hilton Head Island, SC

Long Cove Golf Club – Hilton Head Island, SC

MBNA – Maine

OOCL – Taipei, Taiwan

Palmer and Cay – Georgia

Palmetto Bluff /Crescent Development Corporation – South Carolina

Piggly Wiggly Corporation – South Carolina

Professional Mortgage Company Collection – South Carolina

Roper Foundation – South Carolina

Sea Island Company/The Cloister – Sea Island, GA.

Sea Pines Plantation Company – South Carolina

South Carolina Governors Mansion – South Carolina

South Carolina National Bank – South Carolina

Spring Island Plantation Company Collection – South Carolina

The Boathouse Restaurant – Charleston, S.C.

The Signal Companies – South Carolina

The State of South Carolina – Columbia, S.C.

The White House, Historic Foundation – Washington, DC.

Thompson Industries – New York, N.Y.

US Department of State, US Embassy – Ottawa, Canada

 

Select Commissioned Portraits

PGA Heritage Classic Foundation, 1988 – 2015 Winners – Hilton Head Island, SC

The Honorable Mark Sanford – South Carolina Governor

Ethel Jane Bunting – Charleston, SC

Gogo Ferguson – Cumberland Island, GA

Mr. Phil Lader – Ambassador to the Court of St. James

Jim Ferree – Hilton Head, S.C.

 

Memberships

California Arts Club (CAC)

Oil Painters of America (OPA)

Salmagundi Club

Signature Member – Plein Air Painters of America (PAPA)

Commissioner – South Carolina Art’s Commission (2003-2012)

 

Annual Portrait Painter of the Winner of the PGA Heritage Classic Foundation – Hilton Head Island, SC

1988 Winner – Greg Norman

1989, 1990 Winner – Payne Stewart

2003, 1998, 1991 Winner – Davis Love III

1992 Winner – David Edwards

1994, 1993 Winner – Hale Irwin

1995 Winner – Bob Tway

1996 Winner – Loren Roberts

1997 Winner – Nick Price

1999 Winner – Glen Day

2004, 2000 Winner – Stewart Cink

2001 Winner – Jose Coceros

2005, 2002 Winner – Justin Lenonard

2006 Winner – Aaron Baddeley

2008, 2007 Winner – Boo Weekley

2009 Winner – Brian  Gay

2015, 2010 Winner – Jim Furyk

2011 Winner –  Brant Snedekar

2012 Winner –  Carl Pettersson

2013 Winner –  Graeme McDowell

2014 Winner – Matt Kuchar

 

January 22, 2017 The Post and Courier Gibbes Museum Pairs Bucolic  Fraser Landscapes with Bold Lawrence Prints’ http://fitnessbusinessreports.com/s__www/features/gibbes-museum-pairs-bucolic-fraser-landscapes-with-bold-lawrence-prints/article_aef46220-dda5-11e6-b831-b707680b3d81.html

June/July 2016 Garden & Gun Magazine ‘Wild by Nature’   http://gardenandgun.com/article/wild-nature

May 2016  Charleston Magazine ‘Native Son’    http://charlestonmag.com/features/native_son

September 2015 Hilton Head Monthly ‘West Fraser: Son of the Lowcountry’ Cover art for both Hilton Head Monthly and Bluffton Monthly 

http://www.hiltonheadmonthly.com/people/profiles/2752-west-fraser-son-of-the-lowcountry

April-May 2012, Plein Air Magazine, “Museum Showcases Landscapes & Figure Paintings.” A six page spread about West Fraser’s current exhibition at the Telfair Museums in Savannah, Georgia.

 

2012 Telfair Academy Museum show catalog,”A Native Son”: Paintings by West Fraser. A 47 page exhibition catalog for West Fraser’s 8th solo retrospective show in his hometown Savannah, GA.

 

2011, California Light: “A Century of Landscapes.”

 

2011 Contemporary American Marine Art

 

2011, California Art Club Newsletter, “West Fraser: A Voice From the South”  Artist Profile/West Fraser, Written by, Molly Siple.

 

January 2010, Charleston Magazine, Charleston, S.C. cover art  by West Fraser titled, ‘View from St. John the Baptist’ Charleston rooftop painting.

 

July 2009, American Society of Marine Artists (ASMA), Notes from Brush Hill Studios, Artist Profile/West Fraser, Written by, Charles Raskob Robinson.

 

November/December 2008, The Charleston Review, Artist Profile/ West Fraser, written by Mary Frash.

 

Sunday November 30, 2008, The State , Columbia, South Carolina. The State Newspaper featured ½ pg. color plate of the mantle and portrait of the South Carolina Governor The Honorable Mark Sanford by West Fraser at the Governor’s Mansion.

 

September 2008, Southern Living Magazine, “Return to Charleston”, Written by, Southern Living Editor, Cassandra M. Vanhooser. This 3 page article describes her love of Charleston and dedicates a section of the article to “Celebrated painter”, West Fraser and his love for Charleston.

 

Spring & Summer 2008, Gibbes Museum of Art, Collector’s Publication Signatures, Artist Profile/West Fraser, Written by, Pam Wall. This 3 pg. article follows the genesis of West Fraser’s new series, capturing Lowcountry Plantation out buildings. One full page and 2 – ¼  pg. color plates, depicting the artist at work.

 

Spring 2008, Legends Magazine,  “Island Muse, Artists draw from Kiawah’s mystique”, Written by, Stephanie Hunt.

 

March 2008, American Art Collector, “Coastal Carolina” This national publication featured a 4 page article about West Fraser and his passion for the Southern Coastline. 6 – ¼ to full page color plates of images depicting Charleston, S.C. and the coastal landscape. Featurin ‘Morning Coffee’,’ It’s a Marvelous Night’, ‘Atlantic Moonrise’, ‘Gossip’, ‘Afternoon Delight,’ and ‘It’s a Beautiful Garden’.

 

Summer 2007, Edible Lowcountry, “Food As Art” Written by, Lyn Mettler. This local magazine features a pg. color plate image of West Fraser’s painting titled, ‘Sorting Soft Shells’. A two page article about West Fraser’s May 2007 exhibition titled, Support American Fishermen. The article tells the story of Fraser’s commitment to the Lowcountry’s shrimpers, crabbers and fishermen and it raises awareness of the need for support of sustainable food sources, predominately local. Fraser donated 5% from the sales of these paintings to The Seafood Alliance of South Carolina.

 

2007, The Irvine Museum, “Saving California’s Vanishing Treasures” Written by, Mrs. Joan Irvine Smith, President, The Irvine Museum. An 8 page National brochure written by Mrs. Irvine Smith about protecting and preserving the cultural, historical and natural resources of the State of California and about the different organizations that help preserve the State. On pg. 3 contains a ¼ pg. color plate image by West Fraser titled, ‘Fountain of the Four Evangelists, Mission San Juan Capistrano’.

 

March 27, 2007, Bluffton Today, “Capturing The Elusive Lowcountry, Artist West Fraser documents our changing landscape” Written by Ruth Ragland. This regional newspaper features on the front page a ¼ pg. color plate image of West Fraser’s painting titled, Moreland Landing with the headline of the article. On pages 12 & 13 (2 pg. article & the cover story), contains 4 – pg. color plate images; titled, The Queen on Queen, The Lodge, Rising Tide on Light Dappled Bank & Village Pastoral and 1 – pg. image of the artist, West Fraser. The article tells the biographical history of renowned Southern artist West Fraser, his accomplishments and his passion for the lowcountry.

 

March 15, 2007, The Island Packet, “Landscape Painter returns to Bluffton to judge SOBA art show” Written by Jenny Lim. This regional newspaper contains a ½ page image of artist, West Fraser and ¼ pg. color plate image titled, Atlantic Moonrise. A full page article on the nationally renowned artist West Fraser returning home to judge the local art leagues annual event. The article tells the biographical history of West Fraser and his accomplishments, as well, information regarding the Society of Bluffton Artists.

January 15, 2007, The Island Packet, “Woman Travels to Capital to Capture Inaugural Day Moments” Written by David Lauderdale. This regional newspaper contains a ¼ page image of Governor Mark Sanford’s official portrait by West Fraser. The portrait was painted on Governor Sanford’s farm, Coosa Plantation and it now hangs in the library at the Governor’s Mansion.

 

January 2007, Charleston Magazine, “Homecoming: A Multigenerational, historic Mount Pleasant home gets a loving update,” written by Emily Perlman Abedon, Photographs by Paula Illingworth. This regional magazine contains a ¼ page image of West Fraser’s painting is of the old Cooper River bridges, a tour boat and a container ship and hangs on the couple’s wall, below the image is a description of the painting and the artist.

 

August 2006, United States Embassy, Ottawa – ART in Embassies ProgramPublished by the Art in Embassies Program U.S. Department of State, Washington, D.C. Written by Ambassador and Mrs. David Wilkins. A 36 pg. catalogue depicting the art in the U.S. Embassy in Ottawa, Ont. Canada. The catalogue contains a two page biography about the artist West Fraser in English and in French (Pgs.7 & 8). There are 5 full page color plates of paintings by West Fraser – The Ambassador and Mrs. Wilkins photo portrait in front of Looking to Bull Island (pg.1), full page image and description of Cool January Morning with Three Churches (Pg.9), full page image and description of  Looking to Bull Island (Pg.10), full page image and description of  New Moon Tide (Pinkney Island, National Wildlife Preserve) (Pg. 11) and full page image and description of  Subtle Changes (Donally Wildlife Reserve, Ace Basin, South Carolina) (Pg. 12).

 

June 2006, The Boathouse: Tales and Recipes from a Southern Kitchen, introduction by Richard S. W. Stoney, written by Douglas W. Bostick and Jason R. Davidson, photographs by Stewart Young and paintings by West Fraser. This national cookbook uses 4 images of West Fraser’s paintings to represent the four seasons. The four color plates are Spring – It’s a Beautiful Garden (p.42), Summer- Support American Fisherman (p.76), Fall – Taylor with a Double (p.106), and Winter – Red Light (p.146).

 

May 2006, The Robb Report, “Charleston, S.C.”, written by Anne T. Pope. This national/international magazine contains a ½ page image of West Fraser’s roof top painting titled “View from St. Michael’s Steeple”. The painting initiates a 6 page article on where to find Charleston’s best – architects, interior designer, retail shops and art galleries. The page is a description of the artist, his gallery and the painting is included below and in the article.

 

May 2006, Charleston Magazine, “The Art of Living: To one downtown family, fine furnishings and collected art is just the stuff of everyday life,” written by Elle Mcgee, Photographed by Larry Monteith. This regional magazine contains a ¼ page image of West Fraser’s painting titled “East Battery Nocturne” on the families wall, below the image is a description of the painting and the artist.

 

November/December 2005, Southern Accents Magazine, “Celebrating in Charlotte”, written by Danny C. Flanders, Photographed by William Waldron. This national publication contains an 11 page article exhibiting the home of Mr. and Mrs. Nelson Schwab. In the middle of the article there is a ¼ page image of a large painting by West Fraser over the Schwab’s living-room sofa and the opposite page there is a description of the artist and painting.

 

October 2005, Charleston Magazine, “A Light Touch,” written by Stephanie Hunt and photographs by Rick McKee. This regional publication contains a 10 page written article about the life and career of West Fraser. The article includes 15 images of paintings by West Fraser.

 

August 2005, Plein Air Magazine, Salon d’Art Today’s Masters: “A Dance of Light – West Fraser”, written by Beatrice Aaronson. This national publication features a 5 page written article about West Fraser’s life and career. The article includes 6 images of paintings by West Fraser.

 

May 2005, Art & Antiques Magazine, Today’s Master: “Points of View – West Fraser tells scenic stories en plein air”, written by Susan Sully & portrait by Paula Illington. This national publication features a two page written article about West Fraser and his career. The article includes 5 images of paintings by West Fraser.

 

Spring/Summer 2005, RedBone Journal, “Pulling Pig and Pigs that Pulled”, written by Jimmy Lozar. This national publication contains 1 ½ page image by West Fraser created for the winners of the Charleston, S.C. tournament in Nov. 2004.

 

March 2005, Visions of Palmetto Bluff, – A 50 page illustrated promotional book by Crescent Resources depicting the 20,000 – acre development know as Palmetto Bluff. For more than a century “ The Bluff” has been know to a privileged few as one of the wildest and most beautiful places in the Carolina Lowcountry. Mr. Fraser was commissioned to paint a collection of paintings of Palmetto Bluff and 9 pieces of the collection are depicted in this coffee table book.

 

January 2005, Hilton Head Monthly, 20th Anniversary, Intriguing people of the Lowcountry: “West Fraser, Lowcountry landscapes”, written by Allison Laurie. This magazine contains a full page article on the history of West Fraser, his passion for the lowcountry, and his youth, growing up on Hilton Head Island.

 

January 2004, Sandlapper, The Magazine of South Carolina, “West Fraser’s Southern Art”, written by Rosie O’Rear & illustrated with paintings by West Fraser. This magazine contains a four page article with four ½ page paintings of West’s. The article emphasizes West’s charitable contributions to the arts. A scholarship fund West spearheaded in honor of his son Daniel W. Fraser, who died at age 3. As well, West talks about his art, his philosophy and his life. There are numerous quotes in the article from respected museum directors and artists concerning West and his work.

 

October 2003, Bound For Blue Water, Contemporary American Marine Art, J. Russell Jinishian – Publisher, Greenwich Workshop Press

isbn# 0-86713-088-1

Greenwich Workshop Press

151 Main Street

Seymour, CT  06483

West has 1 color plate “Receding Tide Reflections”

A full size publication of the best in marine painting, with many of West contemporaries.

October 2003, Enchanted Isle, a History of Plein Air Painting in Santa Catalina Island. Published by The Society for the Advancement of Pein Air Painting

Featuring West Fraser paintings:  “Washington Palms” 1997 page 153, “California Coconuts Palms” 1997 page 240, “Cat Harbor View” 1997 page 191

A beautifully printed and designed book of the history of Santa Catalina Island and the artist that painted there through 2001. At least 250 color plates with many contemporary artists mostly from the Plein Air Painters Of America and their guest.

January/February 2003, Southern Accents Magazine – South East – “Plein Air Passion, South Carolina artist West Fraser explores settings near and far in his lush landscapes”- 4 color plates- ‘Old Café in la Chapelle’ 20 x 24 inch oil painted in southern France. ‘First Beer Of the Morning’ 30 x 36 inch oil, painted in SC Lowcountry. ‘Neap Tide Tones’ 36 x 40 inch oil and ‘Morning Skies’ 12 x 10 inch oil ,painted on Daws Island, S.C.- By Julie Cole Art and Antiques editor.

 

November 2002, Palmetto Bluff, Paintings by West Fraser & Photographs by Jim Erickson, Mark Permar & Eric Horn – A 60 page illustrated book depicting the 20,000 – acre tract of land know as Palmetto Bluff. For more than a century “ The Bluff” has been know to a privileged few as one of the wildest and most beautiful places in the Carolina Lowcountry. Mr. Fraser was commissioned to paint a collection of paintings of Palmetto Bluff and 9 pieces of the collection are depicted in this coffee table book.

 

October 2002, Under Live Oaks the Last Great House of the Old South, Caroline Seebohm and Peter Woloszynski (photographer) – Published by Clarkson Potter/Publishers, New York, New York. Page 251, full color page. Portrait of Gogo Ferguson by West Fraser.

 

2002 Gibbes Museum of Art, ‘Charleston In My Time: The Paintings of West Fraser’ Exhibition Catalog – 12 pages, 13 full color illustrations, with essay by Roberta Sokolitz.  The included essay describes West’s life experiences, his schooling, traveling, and his experiences as an Artist.  The influence William McCullough had on West as a plein-air style painter is noted, and plein-air is described as something that has, “expanded the imagery and enriched the subjective content of Fraser’s art”.  West comments on his outdoor painting process, “What I am painting and how I feel at the moment determine how I approach it.  I use what I am looking at as inspiration.  I react and observe.”  Also, schedule of three museums tours, museums & dates.

 

April, 28 2002, Greenville News, Greenville, S.C. “Charleston: In Plein View”, written by Arts writer Ann Hicks.  This article was featured on the cover of the Arts & Travel section of the Sunday newspaper, with one painting by West featured, and many others mentioned.  The article describes his Greenville exhibit, (at the Greenville County Museum of Art, April 17- June 9), and how some works were selected fro it.  There are many quotes from West which describe reasons for particular paintings, and capture how much he loves what he does.  Mention of how West has been painting and sketching the Lowcountry since childhood, is noted along with how he still “wades hip-high in its briny marshes”.  The article closes with a quote from West about his belief that he, “will be traveling and painting for a long time to come, trying to find the joy of painting life.”

 

February 2002, Port Charleston Magazine, “Guest Artist of the Month Column”. The article consists of four paintings (one full page, and three smaller), and one photograph of West.  The 50 one man shows he has been in are mentioned, along with other experience such as serving on the jury for competitions throughout the country.  The article introduces his book, Charleston in My Time. West is recognized as the “eminent interpreter” of Charleston’s city life and the surrounding Lowcountry landscape, in this magazine which is “pleased to feature him as (their) guest artist”.

 

January/February 2002, South Carolina Wildlife, “Daws Island: Rich in History, Rich in Art”, written by Emily Clements illustrated with paintings by West Fraser.  This magazine contains a ten page article with five full page paintings of West’s.  The article is rich with detail about the Island of Daws.  Personal experiences of West’s while out on Daws are described, watching, painting, getting around it as a boy, and then getting to know it after his dad and uncle, Joe and Charles bought it in 1985 with Ned Payne (sold in 1997).  There are quotes from West about the island, “Every time I go there, I find something new, new light, new themes, new opportunities to share the environment.  It’s really incredible, the only place I know on the East coast that’s easily accessible but still in its purest form.”  There is also an archeological aspect to the article.  Shell rings formed 3,000 to 5,000 years ago during the late Archaic Period are found on Daws.  Unusual shrubs and trees thrive on the calcium from the discarded shells from thousands of years ago.  The wealth of open space gives West a diversity of light.  The article also has a detailed historical background of Daws Island.  In the historic part of the article West is at one point compared to Le Moyne, a French painter who was one of the first men to walk the island, and appreciated its great beauty.  The article makes you want to visit Daws, and states that looking at West’s paintings at the Renaissance Gallery are like, “walking on the island.”

 

2000, Arts from the Parks, by North Light Books. Edited by Rachel Rubin Wolf.  74 Artists Celebrate North America’s National Parks and Outdoor Scenes in Majestic Grandeur.  West’s, “Cumberland Field” oil on linen 16 x 20in. takes up one full page, and there is a description written by West that follows the painting.  West breaks the painting down describing how it started as a water color, and then with later observation he saw more dramatic designs in the foreground shadows.  His use of color is also discussed, simple color harmony lends appeal.

 

August 8, 1999, The Post and Courier, Charleston, S.C.  “Fraser’s work to be part of White House calendar”, written by staff writer Dottie Ashley.  The article is six-columns with photograph in the, “Arts Around” column.  West Fraser tells of his experiences in Washington, D.C. while participating in the White House Year 2000 commemorative calendar.  Initially prohibited by the US Park Police from setting up an easel in Lafayette Park across from the White House, Fraser was invited inside the White House gates near the North Portico to set up his easel.  Later West was invited inside the White House for coffee and offered a tour by one of the curators.  At an artist reception in April at the White House, Fraser met Hilary Rodham Clinton.  The calendar was a program sponsored by the White House Historical Association, originally founded by Jackie Kennedy in 1961, for funds to purchase a piece of furniture belonging to the John Adams estate.

 

July 20, 1999, Los Angeles Times, Los Angeles, Ca.  “There Was Something in the Plein-Air”, written by Ann Conway, a staff reporter.  The article was in the Orange County “Southern California Living” section with a one-column on the front page which continued on page E-4 with a photograph.  A recap of the Laguna Plein Air Painters Association annual competition in conjunction with the Laguna Art Museum, West Fraser is mentioned as a bronze winner for “Canyon Cottage”.

 

March 14, 1999, The Post and Courier, Charleston, S.C.  “Fraser’s works honest, forthright”, written is By Frank Martin (Frank C. Martin II is a curator at The I.P. Stanback Museum, SC State University.  A graduate in art history from Yale University with a master’s in the history of art from Hunter College).  Article is four- columns wide with painting.  The review is highly complimentary and compares West’s work as a legacy to other American landscape painters like Heade, Twatchman and Homer.  Martin considers Fraser’s strength to be his canvases which are honest and forthright in their communicative and emotional power and offer a consistent authority of execution.  The weakness in his work is degeneration into mere illustration.  The review states that West gives a nod to the Barbizon school but is sometimes thrown into turbulence by the intrusions of elements of Expressionism and painterly abstraction in the midst of staunch traditionalism.  Martin further states that “The repeated use of romanticized, melodramatic color to elicit emotional responses to the natural beauty of landscape may appear at first to be breathtaking but, frequently, on a second viewing and with careful study translates as contrived or overstated.”  The review summarizes with the delights of the exhibition far outweigh its few detraction and the wonderful pieces in the show are truly extraordinary.

 

March 7, 1999, Beaufort Gazette, Beaufort, S.C. “Fraser in love with Lowcountry – Artist’s says light right in Charleston”. The article is a two column text with two paintings in color.  Biographical article on West Fraser, he is serving as a juror for the 38th annual Beaufort Association Spring Exhibit.  Mention of West earning acclaim as a maritime painter, gaining inclusion in E.H.H. Archibald’s “Dictionary of Sea Painters”, the definitive reference on such artists.  There is also mention of the Hubbard Art Award, which recognizes him as one of the country’s top 50 representational artists.  Fraser states, “I love the Lowcountry.  I can see rhythms of the ocean here, feel the rhythm.  My emotional attachment is here.  It’s personal and important.”  West also comments on the uniqueness of the light, “The light is forever changing.  In the early spring, we have that pure tropical light.  In the summer there is a sulky, steamy, ethereal light.  Then in the fall, you get that incredible mist coming off the cool air over hot steamy marshes…also in a week’s span you see every kind of cloud formation.  At times you have different shadow and light effects on the architecture.  Charleston, as an Architectural element, has an authentic significance you don’t find in many places in America.”  West immerses himself in the subject and delves below the surface and visually becomes more intimate with the landscape.  Fraser’s art features dense, broken brush work and vibrant colors and he refers to his style as naturalistic impressionism which is defined as a particular phenomenon of light hitting the eye and how the artist paints what he sees when that happens.

 

Fall/Winter 1999, Charleston Place – A Magazine, Compliments of Charleston Place An Orient Express Hotel.  “White House Connection”, written by Laurie Hutchinson Felber.  The article is mostly about West Fraser representing South Carolina for “The White House, A Year 2000 Calendar” project.  The painting used in the calendar is “Cool August Morning” oil on linen 30 x 32in.  One full page of the article contains this painting.  Six other paintings by West are included in this magazine; “Shadows on Church Street” oil on linen 30 x 26in. is used for the cover. There are also photos of West and his easel set up in front of The White House.  The Article contains background information of The White House Historical Association and the reason for his painting; to depict The White House’s 200 years.  How West was chosen for South Carolina is included.  14 artists in total were chosen, one for each of the 13 original colonies and one for the District of Columbia.  However, of the fourteen artists, West was the only one permitted to paint on The White House Grounds.  The article goes into great detail about the special permission granted to West through The White House Ushers office.  “Due to not one but two Supreme Court Battles to rid Lafayette Square of homeless people and their shelters, a decision had been reached that no structures of any kind – including an artist’s easel – would be permitted on the square.”  Al Cama of The Washington Post brought support for West’s painting, and permission was granted.  The article continues and describes West as an artist, his background, his attraction to other paintings, his attention to detail, and the awards he has won.  The article is eight pages.  One of West’s paintings, “Folly River Bank” 10 x 24in. is used in the magazine as an illustration for the Index.  

 

October 1998, United Airlines in Flight Magazine – Hemispheres. Cover image, a painting by West, “Old Palmetto Stand” 1993.  A “Cover Artist Profile”by Margaret Moore is also included with a small photo of West, and two small images of his paintings.  The artists profile gives background information about West growing up on Hilton Head Island, etc.  “Fraser’s plein air paintings…capture the shimmering, mutable light that infuses the semitropical lowcountry landscape.”

 

September 24, 1998, The Post and Courier, Charleston, S.C. “Charleston painter has brush with bureaucracy”, written by staff writer Steve Piacente.  The article is front page with photo and continues on 10A.  West donates paintings of White House for 2000 calendar by White House Historical Association along with thirteen other artists from the original thirteen colonies, and one from the District of Columbia.  The proceeds from the calendar are being used to purchase a piece of furniture from the estate of John and Abigail Adams.  US Park Service bans him from Lafayette Park – West wins 

 

June 28, 1998, The Atlanta Journal Constitution, Atlanta, Ga. “An Artist’s Retreat”, written by staff writer Lyn Riddle.  The article is four columns wide with three photographs. Details the Visiting Artist Program which was founded in 1990 by Betsy Chaffin, wife of the developer of Spring Island.  Mentions West Fraser as one of the first to participate and return on a regular basis.

 

June 28, 1998, The Post and Courier,  Charleston, S.C. West Fraser’s artwork is on display at Tradd Street Press”, written by staff writer Dottie Ashley.  The article is two pages with one painting depicted in her “Arts Around” column.  West is characterized as a plein air artist which was a technique widely used by the French Impressionists and English painters like John Constable.

 

1998, Orange County – The Annual Edition  Featuring ‘Mission Courtyard’ by West Fraser. The painting serves as an illustration for the article, “Mission San Juan Capistrano – The Jewel of the Missions”.  This is a three page article that has historical background of California and of Spain, and of the missions found there.  The article depicts the beauty of the missions and states how, “visitors return again and again.”

 

Spring 1998, California Homes the Magazine of Architecture, the Arts & Distinctive Design, “San Juan Capistrano: The Jewel of the Missions”, written by Michael McFadden.  The article is four pages with one painting of West’s, “Mission Courtyard”.  The paintings are selections from the 1997 California Art Club Outdoor Painting Festival at the Missions San Juan Capistrano.  This is a historical article which romanticizes the beautiful California chapels, churches, etc.  Explanations and examples of the churches being full of legends are included.  Also it is stated how the U.S. would be different today, if not for the missions established in California.

 

Fall/Winter 1997, Charleston Place Hotel magazine “People, Places, and Things”, written by Susan Sully.  This is a nine page article containing two of West’s paintings, one of which, “Nocturne for the Blues” takes up the full first page.  The other painting by West that is included at a half of a page in size is, “Tradd and Meeting”.  The article is broken up into an introduction paragraph, and three main topics: “People, Places, and Things”.  As a whole it is about the many ways to view the artistic city of Charleston.  Basically the article focuses on six artists, two are under each topic.  West is discussed under “Places”, along with artist, Linda Fantuzzo.  Sully quotes West about how he sees Charleston.  West discusses the clouds, weather, the light, and also the architecture, “At all times, you have different shadow and light effects on the architecture.  Charleston, as an architectural element has an authentic significance that you don’t find in many places in America.”  Artists, Rhett Thurman, and Thomas Sully are quoted about their portrait paintings under the topic of “People” in the article.  The last topic is about “Things”, and the artists, Marty Whaley Adams and, William McCullough are included.

 

March 12, 1996, The Item, Sumter, S.C. “Powerful in the Abstract”. The article is the front page of “Panorama” section.  It is a review of the 15th Annual Oil Painter’s Invitational sponsored by the National Bank of South Carolina.  West Fraser’s landscape, “Passing Weather”, received an honorable mention award.

 

1995 Springfield Museum of Art, Exhibition Catalog, ‘The Color of Light – Paintings by West Fraser’, 1983 – 1995 Museum exhibition catalogue for the Springfield Museum of Art in Springfield, Ohio.  The introduction is by Mark Chepp, the director, with forward by C. Duncan Connelly.  The cover illustration is “Greyfield Ceder Sunrise” Oil on Linen, 1989 24”x 36”.  All of the paintings depicted in this book are full page color plates.  There is also an Artist’s Chronology, and an Exhibition Checklist, 1-60.  The Library of congress has this book under # 95-074964.

 

June 1994, Carolina Magazine, “West Fraser: The Evolution of a Charleston Artist”, written by Ashby Ravenel.  The Article is the cover story, and it is four pages with one photo and five paintings, including the cover.  Early on in the article, the artist states that “The out-of-doors have always given me a spiritual calm,” and then the article expands on West’s love of unspoiled coast lines.  There is also great emphasis on the role of an illustrator, versus an artist.  In the 1960’s three prominent illustrators from New York, all in the Illustrators Hall of Fame, were living on Hilton Head doing portraiture; Colby Whitmore, Joe Bowler and Joe DeMeres.  All three of these men served as mentors to West.  To have something to fall back on, in case he couldn’t “make it” as a painter, West also went to graphic design school.  After years of success as an illustrator, he felt unfilled.  Fraser states, “In Illustration, you intend to do it because you want to do it.  You’re trying to evolve.  The work can still be rendered-realistic- but you infuse it with your emotions, your life, your intentions… the difference is in intent rather than style.  Being an artist is a lot more than making pictures and selling them.  Being an artist is an attempt to communicate openly and freely.  I mean, after all, visual arts are basically communication.  It is very difficult to put into words what I do, but perhaps that is why I paint.  If you have to explain your work, then perhaps you are not a painter.”

 

1994, Sxhibition Catalog, Gibbes Museum of ArtLure of the Lowcountry – Gibbes Museum of Art Charleston, South Carolina “In the Dinghy”, written by Kristina Montvidas-Kutkus.  This article is a five page tribute to southern painters.  There are six paintings total with one by West.  “It is said that Southerners love their land.”  The article describes the changing light conditions in the southern sky, and landscape.  West is described as an artist who captures the “changeable cloud and light conditions.” 

 

December 2, 1993, Upwith Herald, Charleston, S.C.  “Interview: West Fraser”. The article is one page by Chris Kincade; it contains one photo and one painting.  The interview focuses on West’s passion for the wild and pristine estuaries and his immersion in those locations where as a self confessed ruralist, he does his best work.  The artist also discusses that he seems to be coming into his own as a painter and now feels the integrity of the picture is more important than subject matter.  West states, “Right now, my style is evolving faster than it has in the past.   I’m freeing myself up for experimenting.  I’m not learning hoe to draw and render anymore.  I know how to do that… I’m free to concentrate on form, content and structure of the painting…my work is becoming more intuitive and more expansive.  I’m lucky that I don’t have to worry about the latest trends or what is hip.  I think a lot of people get trapped in that.  They forget it takes years to develop the individual.  You don’t know what you do until you have spent years at it.”

 

Spring 1993, Watercolor 93 – An American Artist publication. “West Fraser”. The article is one page with one painting.  West is depicted as a painter who captures America’s undeveloped coastline in a plea for preservation.  The artist believes that his watercolors are the best way for him to portray the beauty and dynamism of the coastal areas.  He hopes to stimulate an appreciation for nature and our cultural heritage and an awareness of their precarious futures.  His paintings have been included in juried exhibitions of the Knickerbocker Artists, the Salmagundi Club and Allied Artists, the Salmagundi Club and Allied Artists of America.  In 1985, Fraser was awarded the Mary S. Litt Medal by the American Watercolor Society and in 1990; he received the Merit Award of the Huntsville Museum of Art’s Red Clay Survey.

 

September 26, 1992, The Post and Courrier, Charleston, S.C. “West Fraser: Artist paints the beauty of nature”, written is by a staff writer, Dottie Ashley.  The article is two pages with two photographs and one is on the front cover of the “Style” section.  Depicts West as a conservationist who captures the beauty of nature that might be swept away by development or natural disaster.  There is mention of some of his customers from Christine Brinkley, Billy Joel, Yvonne Goolagong, General Westmoreland, Nations Bank, the Cousteau Society, etc.  His works have been featured in 40 one-man shows including the Hubbard Museum in New Mexico, and the Gibbes Museum of Art in Charleston.  West has been awarded the1991 Hubbard Art Award for Excellence for representational artists and his art traveled to the Far East as a result.  The article chronicles West’s childhood where at the age of 10 he moved with his family to Hilton Head Island which was then a wild, largely undeveloped 21 mile barricade island 100 miles south of Charleston with 5,000 acres of marsh and forests.  His uncle, Charles Fraser, and his father, Joseph B. Fraser developed Sea Pines Plantation which includes a 572-acre forest reserve.  West’s grandmothers, who were both artists, and also the artist community on Hilton Head, played a part in influencing West.  Fraser counts John Singer Sargent, Albert Bierstadt, Joaquin Sorolla and Eduard Manet as great influences, but counts Winslow Homer as his favorite.  After Hurricane Hugo and the devastation of his studio, West changed from watercolors to oils.  This involved changing technique from the very meticulous, exacting brushstrokes used to create a watercolor, to strong, thick, lush, emotional strokes used with oil.  Fraser states, “I’ve never copied style or fads.  I’m not a modernist and I believe that most people don’t understand abstract, expressionist paintings… People like something of quality that they can understand.  I use the principals of art that have been pursued down thousands of years.  I just put my own personal imprint on them.”

 

Summer 1992, Island Scene Magazine, Hilton Head Island, S.C. “West Fraser: Artist in the scene – living the dream”. The Article is three pages written by Nikki Hardin with a photo of, and four paintings by, West Fraser. West’s fascination with the water is described.  Also it is mentioned how he bought a 37-foot sailboat, damaged by Hurricane Hugo, and spent two years restoring it.  The sailboat was named the, “Sea Sisters” after his daughters, Sarah and Rebecca.  West took a four week voyage winding through the ACE Basin and along the South Carolina and Georgia coastline.  He then sailed into Hilton Head where West serves as the tournament artist for the MCI Heritage golf tournament.  Free of the controlled atmosphere of the studio, West is most content as a plein air painter creating outdoors on location.  He often paints from the “Sea Sisters” deck or from the boat’s dinghy.  “The challenge is to edit detail and find those elements which establish the atmosphere, the sense of place and the time of day.  You have to work very quickly and respond to changes in weather and light.  Painting plein air has its difficulties, but to me, it’s the purest form of painting.”  West has created a series of limited edition prints which document the ever changing coast from Maine to the Sea Islands and the varied shores of the West Coast.

 

1991, The Pursuit of Excellence the Hubbard Art Award for Excellence – Exhibition catalog.  Pg. 72 & 73 two full color/full page images by West:  Palmetto Point -Oil 30” x 50”, South Bristol – Oil 34” x 40”. Pg. 20, West Fraser Biography.

 

Spring/Summer 1990, Kiawah Island Legends Magazine, Volume I Number 1 “Beaux Arts”, written by, Dick Reed.  The article is 10 paragraphs and contains one photo of West at work on a watercolor, and four watercolor paintings.  The article gives West’s background with man made developments cooperating with nature.  West’s ability to capture a moment, a feeling, and the beauty of the low country is also highlighted.  The four paintings are: “Charleston Rooftops #2”, “Cutty Hunk”, “Rockville Seafood”, and “Bringing Home the Catch”.  The paintings are large and depicted in full color.  As the article closes Reed states how, “The paintings speak for themselves”.

 

September 12, 1989, U.S.Air in Flight Magazine FOLIO, “Views from West”, written by Marybeth A. Kerr.  The article is six pages and contains a photo layout with one page written cover sheet and five paintings of Maine and Charleston rooftops.  The text defines West as a preserver on paper of the American coastline and wildlife in natural habitats.    

 

1988, Game Fish Peche Au Gros  “Mouche – Les Bons Coins A Mouche Dans Le Monde”, written by Patrick Richer Delavau.  The article is two pages long in French and contains one painting by West, “Tarpon on a fly”.

 

Spring 1985, Nautical Quarterly, “West Fraser’s watercolors: Recording the Coast”, written by Rebecca Smith.  The article is eight pages, which includes seven paintings plus the cover, mostly of New England coast.  Written when West was living in New Hope, Pa. and defines artist concepts about his media as a means of preserving scenes for future generations, for example, the loss of childhood, industry changes natural habitat.  He views his art as a documentary.  This article notes how Fraser feels very strongly about conservation.

 

Spring 1985, Islands “Fine and Fragile Islands–Hilton Head, Daufuskie, Kiawah”, written by James S. Wamsley & Paintings by West Fraser.  The article is twelve pages accompanied by twelve paintings and is a synopsis of the development of these islands. 

West Fraser

West Fraser

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