biography of Sören Emil CARLSEN (1853-1932)

Birth place: Copenhagen, Denmark

Death place: NYC

Addresses: Falls Village, CT/NYC, 1905-32

Profession: Painter, teacher

Studied: …cole des Beaux-Arts de Copenhagen; Danish Royal Acad. (arch.); Paris, 1875; Académie Julian, Paris, 1884-86

Exhibited: Boston AC, 1883-84, 1877, 1881-82, 1909; PAFA, 1883-1932 (1912, gold; 1913, prize; 1916, gold med); NAD, 1885-1932 (1907, medal; 1916, gold med; 1919, prize); Paris Salon, 1885; AIC, 1889-1939; SAA, 1904 (prize), 1905 (prize); SC, 1904 (prize), 1905 (prize); St. Louis Expo, 1904 (gold med); Corcoran Gal biennials, 1907-30; Carnegie Inst, 1908 (medal); Buenos Aires, 1910 (medal); MacBeth Gallery, NYC, 1911-32 (solos in 1912, 1919, 1921, 1923, and retrospective in 1935); NAC, 1915 (medal); Pan-Pacific Expo, 1915 (medal of honor); Corcoran Gal, 1923 (solo); Sesqui-Centennial Expo, Phila., 1926 (gold med); Grand Central Art Gal., 1928-29, 1968 (two-man shows with his son Dines), 1958 (retrospective); Tyler Mus. Art (TX), 1973 (retrospective, 19 still-lifes, one landscape)

Member: SAA, 1902; ANA, 1904; NA, 1906; Bohemian Club; NIAL, 1906; NAC; Lotos Club; fellow, PAFA; SC 1903; Century Assn.; AFA. Jury of Awards: Carnegie Inst. International Exhib., 1920, 1930.

Work: MMA; RISD; NGA; PAFA; NMAA; BM; AIC; Minneapolis Inst.; Herron AI, Indianapolis; WMA; CAM; Engineer's Club, NY; Lotos Club; San Francisco IA; CGA; San Diego MA; Oakland (CA) Mus.; New Britain (CT) Mus. Art; Wadsworth Atheneum; AGAA; Albright Art Gallery, Buffalo

Comments: Full name is Soren-Emil Carlsen. Came to U.S. in 1872, was an architect's assistant and worked briefly with L. Holst in Chicago before teaching for several years in Chicago at the AIC. In 1875 he went to Paris for six months of study. On returning to the U.S., he settled in NYC, lived for awhile in Boston, later in Europe, 1884-86, and in San Francisco, 1887-91 (with a brief interlude in NYC in 1889). In California he was Director of the San Francisco Art Association's California School of Design (1887-89) and shared a studio with Arthur Matthews (1889-91). He returned permanently to NYC in 1891 and continued teaching, at both the NAD and PAFA, through 1918. During the early part of his career (1870s) he was recognized primarily for his large, brilliant, flower still-lifes, in particular those of yellow roses; but he later also gained critical praise for his kitchen and dead-game still lifes, becoming the most important American figure in the Chardin revival of the nineteenth century. His work additionally shows connections with Tonalism and Impressionism. Late in his career he also painted landscapes and seascapes.

Sources: WW31; Baigell, Dictionary; Gerdts, Painters of the Humble Truth, 228-30; Wortsman-Rowe Galleries, The Art of Emil Carlsen, 1853-1932 (San Francisco: Rubicon-Wortsman-Rowe, 1975); Connecticut and American Impressionism 154-55 (w/repro.); Art in Conn.: The Impressionist Years; Falk, Exhibition Record Series