BHNY Fine Art


Erle Loran (1905-1999)

Erle Loran was born in 1905 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. He graduated from the University of Minnesota, and then went on to study at the Minneapolis School of Art under direction of Cameron Booth. Loran received early recognition when, in 1926, he was awarded the Paris Prize from the Chaloner Foundation, which provided him with a scholarship to travel throughout Europe. While in Europe, he lived in the former studio of Paul Cézanne. This experience initiated a life-long fascination with Cézanne, and in 1943 Loran wrote a book on the artist entitled “Cezanne’s Composition.” Upon returning from Europe, Loran moved to California and began exhibiting extensively. He had solo shows at the San Francisco Museum of Art, the Santa Barbara Museum of Art, the Pasadena Museum of Art, and the de Young Museum in San Francisco. He also began a long teaching career at the University of California, Berkeley. Loran served as the chair of the Art Department in the early 1950’s. In his early years of painting, Loran was best know for his watercolor landscapes, but by the late 1960’s he focused on more abstract images, fusing together Op Art, Pop Art, and Hard Edge. Loran retired from the University of California, Berkeley in 1973 and he was awarded a University Citation. The University again recognized his dedicated service in 1981, declaring him an Emeritus Professor. Despite being hindered by a visual impairment, Loran continued to paint until about a year before his death. He died in Berkeley, California in 1999.