Aldrin’s oil sketches are especially exciting. This painter who sees volumes first where others see line produced a body of work that repays close study. An artist aware of everything being done in art, and who patiently went his own way.
Anders Gustave Aldrin was born in Varmland, Sweden, in 1889. He came to the U.S. when he was 21. He served his new country in France in WWI. Although he’d taken a correspondence course in art while still living in Sweden, it wasn’t until he settled in L.A. after WWI that his education took off.
Aldrin was a unique figure in contemporary American art. His art is individual, expressing his personal emotions and perceptions in a style that varied in technique, yet was always uniquely his. He painted for the pure love of it, drawing from his deep love of nature. This is what truly made him happy.
He graduated from Otis Art Institute in 1926 and won a scholarship to the Santa Barbara School of Fine Arts. It was there he studied under Fletcher who taught the Japanese Ukiyoe method of making woodblock prints. Aldrin was one of the first Americans to develop this print technique and was asked to teach in Paris yet he stayed in Southern California.
He was dedicated and went to the studio every day to work. Throughout the years he participated in all the local shows, galleries and museums, in groups as well as one man shows. He painted directly from nature, traveling up and down California, Oregon and Washington. His travels also included Europe, Asia and Russia. He was also known for portraits.
He was professional artist and lived in Los Angeles for 46 years, though he traveled the world extensively, exhibiting and painting. Aldrin struggled with TB most of his life (from WWI on) and despite this illness, was an extremely prolific artist. He died in 1970.