Welcome to the William A. Karges Fine Art Blog

Welcome to the William A. Karges Fine Art Blog, where you'll be able to learn about Early California and Southwest Paintings and discover information about Museum Exhibitions, Current News, Events, and our gallery's new acquisitions of original paintings created between 1870 and 1940 by a wide variety of artists. We'll feature biographies, photographs, links to websites of interest to collectors, video tours, and detailed histories of some of California's most influential and intriguing artists. Visit our Gallery at Dolores & Sixth Ave in Carmel-by-the-Sea, California to view our collection of fine paintings in person.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

"Edgar Payne - The Scenic Journey" Exhibit at the Crocker Art Museum

Of special interest to collectors and students of the history of Early California painting is the new exhibit at the Crocker Art Museum, “Edgar Payne – The Scenic Journey”.  The show is a comprehensive exhibit of paintings by one of the most famous and distinguished artists of the Early California art genre. 

The Crocker Art Museum in Sacramento was established in 1885, and unveiled a 125,000 square foot addition in October of 2010.  The museum includes one of the premier permanent collections of Early California paintings in the state, and is the perfect venue for this exhibition of over 80 works by this important California impressionist.

Patrick Kraft, Director of William A. Karges Fine Art in Carmel, California, attended the opening reception for the Exhibit.  He said that “Curator Scott Shields did a first class job. The paintings were beautifully presented, and there was a strong turnout of serious collectors, art dealers, and authors.  The 1910 Model T Ford was a nice touch, as was the movie of Payne hiking and painting in the Sierras.  It was a large and impressive collection of Paynes from his primary subject matters, the Sierras, the Southwest, boat scenes, and seascapes.”

California Coast - SOLD

The exhibit was curated by the Crocker’s Chief Curator and Associate Director, Scott A. Shields, Ph.D, and organized by the Pasadena Museum of California Art.  Shields describes Payne’s works as “imbued with an internal force and active dynamism achieved through majestic, vital landscape subjects”. 

Edgar Payne (1883 – 1947) is probably best known for his impressionist plein air landscapes of the Sierra Nevada mountains.

"Sierra Slopes - Heart Lake" - SOLD

He also traveled the world extensively and painted scenes in many other locations, including the French and Swiss Alps, as well as fishing scenes in Italy and France. 

Swiss Scene - SOLD

Knowledgeable collectors particularly admire his paintings of the Southwest, including majestic scenes of the Grand Canyon and Canyon de Chelly.

Canyon de Chelly - SOLD

In 1920, Payne became the first President of the Laguna Beach Art Association.  This important group of artists also included notable early California painters Joseph Kleitsch, Hanson Puthuff, and William Wendt.

Edgar Payne’s works can be found in numerous museums and public collections, including the Laguna Art Museum, the National Museum of American Art in Washington D.C., the Oakland Museum, and the Art Institute of Chicago.

His book “The Composition of Outdoor Painting” has been popular with artists as a guide for many years, and has been reprinted many times.  The beautiful new book, “Edgar Payne – The Scenic Journey” was published as companion to the current exhibit at the Crocker Art Museum, and features a lead essay and chronology by Scott Shields. 

In the new book, he writes “In each locale, he sought vitality, bigness, nobility, and grandeur, which he turned into unified, carefully calculated compositions with brushwork that seemed to pulsate with life.”  

Sierra Peak - SOLD

The exhibit opened to the public on February 11th and continues through May 6th, 2012.  Related events at the museum include a visit to the exhibit with commentary by the Curator and Assistant Curator on March 29th at 5:30, and a screening of a new documentary film about the artist on May 3rd at 6:30 pm.  For additional information about the exhibit, please contact the Crocker Art Museum, located at 216 O Street, at (916) 808-7000.  For additional information about available paintings by Edgar Payne at William A. Karges Fine Art in Carmel and Beverly Hills, please call (800) 833-9185.


  1. I would love to see this exhibit..... Hmmmm maybe a road trip is in order???

  2. I,m presently researching painting locations of Edgar Payne in the Sierra. Would either the exhibition catalog or the documentary film help me in my research? If so how may I obtain them?
    Thank you, James Asher

    1. A catalogue for this exhibition can be purchased at the Crocker Art Museum store. You can contact them at 916.808.5531. Sorry for the delay in responding to your question!

  3. I love these posts. You can try some of these California Art Galleries for more like this.

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    1. Thank you for your kind comments, glad you enjoy our Blog!


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