biography of George Alan SWANSON (1908-1962)

Birth place: Hoboken, NJ

Addresses: Bloomfield, NJ

Profession: Painter, illustrator, ceramicist, writer

Studied: Newark Sch. Fine & Indust. Art, with John Grabach, 1931; Sweet Hollow art colony, Bloomsbury, NJ, 1931-33; etching with Will Barnet; ceramics with Julia Hamlin Duncan, in NYC

Exhibited: Contemporary Club, Newark, 1930s; Montclair AM, 1938, 1939; NJ Gal., Newark, 1940 (first prize), 1941 (first prize); Artists of Today, 1942, 1944; Newark Mus., 1944; Riverside Mus., 1945; Soc. Venezolana de Ciencias Naturales, Caracas, Venezuela, 1942, 1945; Waldorf Atsoria Ballroom (two solos); MoMA (ceramics); MMA (ceramics)

Member: New Jersey AA; NY Zoological Soc. (life mem.)

Work: Newark Mus.; MoMA (dance archives).

Comments: A naturalist artist, he descended deepsea to sketch rare tropical fish for Dr. Wm. Beebe on his famous Tropical Expeditions with the NY Zoological Soc., 1934-46, and continued with seven more related scientific expeditions into the Pacific, Central and South America, and the West Indies. Later, he produced final paintings from the sketches, and these were used to illustrate Beebe"s book, Half Mile Deep. Swanson also ran his own art school in Bermuda, 1934-35. From 1937-42 he also documented in watercolors and drawings the Ballet Russe and other troupes that danced in NYC. Author/illustrator: Weird Dwellers of the Deep" in Popular Science (1944); "Jungle Studio" in Animal Kingdom magazine (1946). Positions: freelance designer, wallpaper and fabrics; designer for Norcross, Inc.

Sources: WW59; WW47; add'l info courtesy Shannon FA, New Haven, CT"