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Burleigh, Sydney Richmond

(1853-1931) Painter, illustrator, craftsman, and architect, Sydney Burleigh was a colorful and prominent figure in New England artistic circles. He was born in the Rhode Island town of Little Compton, which he frequently painted, and he spent much of his career in Providence. He worked as a craftsman for the manufacturing company Browne and Sharp from 1873 until 1876, when he established a studio in Providence. In 1878 he traveled to Europe, studying painting in Paris with Jean-Paul Laurens, touring the continent and working briefly in Italy. He returned to Providence in 1880, becoming active with the newly-established Providence Art Club. He was a member of the Board of Directors of the Rhode Island School of Design, where he taught watercolor painting. In 1885 he built the flamboyant Fleur-de-Lys studio on Thomas Street, on the slope of Providence’s historic College Hill. This medieval-inspired, half-timbered-and-stucco building with exuberant bas-relief panels executed by Burleigh was the first structure created expressly for artists’ studios, a revolutionary concept in its day. Based on buildings Burleigh had seen in Chester, England, it was designed by him and constructed with the assistance of his colleagues Charles Walter Stetson and John G. Aldrich. Today it is recognized as an architectural landmark of the Arts and Crafts movement.

Title: Daffodils
Medium: Watercolor; SLR 17.5" x 13.5" sight
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Title: Golden Twilight
Medium: charcoal and pastel, 7" x 5"

Title: Sea and Cliffs
Medium: watercolor, signed lower left, 13.5" x 9.5"