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Francis Barker Valentine
Francis Barker “Val” Valentine (American, 1897-1985) noted painter, illustrator, designer, muralist, lecturer and teacher known for his watercolor landscapes and cityscapes, murals and commercial advertising design work. Valentine studied at the Buffalo School of Fine Arts (Albright Art School), Buffalo, NY from 1916-17 and later studied at the Yale School of Fine Arts from 1918-21 (now the Yale University School of Art), receiving his B.F.A. for advanced work of distinction in painting, New Haven CT. Furthered studies at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia, PA. Valentine studied with Daniel Garber (American, 1880-1958) and William Sergeant Kendall (1869-1938). From about 1921-28, Valentine worked as a commercial designer in the art department for the Barton, Durstine & Osborn Co. advertising agency (later known as the Batten, Barton, Durstine & Osborn after 1928) in New York City. He taught at the Albright Art School, Buffalo, NY (circa 1932). During the early 1930’s he worked for the federal Public Works of Art Project (PWAP) designing murals and later worked as the senior artist at the Buffalo & Erie County Public Library in 1966, Buffalo, NY. Francis maintained his home and studio in Buffalo, NY and later in Hamburg, NY.

Chronology:

1897- Born, September 20th, to Francis James Valentine and Ada L. (neé Barker), Buffalo, NY.

1915- Studied at the Buffalo Technical High School, Buffalo, NY.

circa 1916- Futhered studies with one year of Technical Night School, in commercial design, Buffalo, NY.

1916-17- Won scholarship from his high school and studied at the Buffalo School of Fine Arts (Albright Art School), Buffalo, NY.

1918-21- Received loan scholarship and studied at the Yale School of Fine Arts (now the Yale University School of Art), receiving his B.F.A. for advanced work of distinction in painting and while studying there, received two first-mentions in the Beaux Arts competitions in the mural decoration field, New Haven CT.

circa 1921- Furthered studies at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia, PA.

circa 1921-1928- Worked as a commercial designer in the art department for the Barton, Durstine & Osborn Co. advertising agency (later known as the Batten, Barton, Durstine & Osborn after 1928), NYC.

1926- Exhibited, group show, landscape paintings, Hamburg Fair, Hamburg, NY.

circa 1933-34- Worked on the federal Public Works of Art Project (PWAP) designing murals; one such preliminary sketch “A Trained Man is a Useful Citizen”, colored pencil on tracing paper, 12” x 28”, was proposed for a mural at the Burgard Vocational High School, Buffalo, NY but was never completed because the PWAP ended before he could execute it. The sketch compared the pioneers of the 19th Century to those in Buffalo’s aircraft industry for which the high school was training its students. Valentine was not on the WPA/FAP (Work Projects Administration/Federal Art Projects) and murals in a somewhat different form were completed by Eugene M. Dyczkowski (American, 1899-1987) in 1937, based on the sketch by Valentine.

1945- Exhibited, (prize), Albright Art Gallery (now the Albright Knox Art Gallery), Buffalo, NY.

1953- Exhibited, solo show, Hamburg, NY.

1954- Exhibited, (prize), Albright Art Gallery, Buffalo, NY.

1955- Exhibited, (silver medal), Albright Art Gallery, Buffalo, NY.

1955-58- Exhibited, (3 prizes) Hamburg Fair, Hamburg, NY.

1957- Exhibited, solo show, Crane Branch Library, Buffalo, NY.

1958- Exhibited, group show (prize), Erie County Fair, Buffalo, NY.

1960- Exhibited, group show (prize), Erie County Fair, Buffalo, NY.

1963- Exhibited, group show (prize), Erie County Fair, Buffalo, NY.

1966- Worked as the senior artist at the Buffalo & Erie County Public Library in 1966, Buffalo, NY.

1985- Died, January 31st, after a long illness, Our Lady of Victory Hospital, Lackawanna, NY. Funeral was February 2nd, at Froehly Funeral Home, Hamburg, NY, and is buried with his father and mother in Elm Lawn Cemetery, Tonawanda, NY.

Exhibited also at: Buffalo Society of Artists (silver medal), Buffalo, NY; Hotel Statler, Buffalo, NY; The Patteran Society, Buffalo, NY; Grand Central Art Gallery, NYC; Riverside Art Museum, Riverside, CA; Yale Club, New Haven, CT; Great Lakes Traveling Exhibition; Yale School of Fine Arts (now the Yale University School of Art), won two first-mentions while studying there in the Beaux Arts competitions in the mural decoration field, New Haven CT.

Memberships: The Patteran Society, Buffalo, NY; Buffalo Society of Artists, Buffalo, NY; Albright Art Gallery (now the Albright Knox Art Gallery), Buffalo, NY; Artists Guild (Professor), Buffalo, NY; Commercial Artists Guild, Buffalo, NY.

Prizes: Two first-mentions while studying at the Yale School of Fine Arts (now the Yale University School of Art) in the Beaux Arts competitions in the mural decoration field, New Haven CT; Albright Art Gallery (prize 1945, 1954, silver medal 1955), Buffalo, NY; (3 prizes) Hamburg Fair, Hamburg, NY.

Museums/Collections: Burchfield-Penney Art Center, Buffalo, NY; Eleven watercolor paintings of Buffalo's waterfront, on permanent display at the Waterfront Memories & More Museum, Mutual Riverfront Park, 41 Hamburg St., Buffalo, NY.

Galleries: Meibohm Fine Arts, Inc. East Aurora, NY.

Public Collections: IBM, Buffalo, NY; YMCA, Buffalo, NY; Charlotte Avenue School, Hamburg, NY; Hamburg Public Library, Hamburg, NY; Burgard Vocational High School, preliminary sketch “A Trained Man is a Useful Citizen”, colored pencil on tracing paper, 12” x 28”, Buffalo, NY.

Publications: The Artists Bluebook: 34,000 North American Artists to March 2005, by Lonnie Dunbier Pierson (editor), Askart.com, Inc., 2005; Davenport's Art Reference: The Gold Edition, by Ray Davenport, 2005; Who Was Who in American Art, 1564-1975, 3 Volumes, by Peter Hastings Falk, 1999; Who Was Who in American Art, Artists Active Between 1898-1947, by Peter Hastings Falk (editor), 1985; New Deal for Art, by Marlene Park and Gerald Markowitz, 1977.

For possible additional information or images from this artist, please visit the AskArt link

(Rewritten & compiled chronologically by Mark Strong of Meibohm Fine Arts, Inc., East Aurora, NY, 04/2009, Sources: Our internal records; Who Was Who in American Art, 1564-1975; by Peter Hastings Falk (Editor), 1999; info and photo from, The Buffalo Artists’ Register, Volume 1, pg. 411, edition limited to 1,000 copies, 1926; New Deal for Art, by Marlene Park and Gerald Markowitz, 1977.)

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