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Richard Wedderspoon began focusing on art after a broken collar bone ended his sports career. He graduated with honors from Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts in 1917 after being awarded the Cresson Traveling Scholarship for 1915-1916. At the Academy, he studied under and was greatly influenced by Henry McCarter's and Daniel Garber's different styles. He later adopted a more impressionistic style like Garber's, painting mainly landscapes with trees and barns as focal points. Although Wedderspoon traveled in America and Europe, he found the most inspiration and did the most work in the Bucks County area. While he spent his winters in Syracuse teaching painting, he lived on Phillips' Mill Road in Solebury, and later in Yardley during the summers. A World War I veteran, Wedderspoon is buried at Arlington National Cementary in Washington, DC.
Photograph of Richard Wedderspoon painting in Front Royal, Virginia, 1937. Image courtesy of Reginald J. Birks.
Major Group Exhibitions
Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 1920
Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, Illinois, 1918-1926
Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., 1916
Detroit Museum of Fine Arts, Detroit, Michigan
Peabody Institute, Baltimore, Maryland
Syracuse Museum of Fine Arts, Syracuse, New York
50th Anniversary Retrospective Art Exhibition, Phillips' Mill Community Association, New Hope, Pennsylvania, 1979
Teaching and Professional Appointments
Professor of Painting, Syracuse University, New York, 1923-1943
Trustee, Everson Museum of Art, Syracuse and Onondaga County, New York
Fellow, Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia
Cresson Traveling Scholarship, Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, 1915, 1916
Toppan Prize, Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, 1917
Robert Rice Jenkins Prize, Art Institute of Chicago, 1920
Landscape Prize, Syracuse Museum, 1936
Popular Prize, Syracuse Museum, 1944
Landscape Prize, Yardley Exhibit, 1965
Richard Wedderspoon (1889-1976), Lakeside, c. 1958. Oil. Image courtesy of Reginald J. Birks.
Teachers and Influences
Wedderspoon studied with Daniel Garber at Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. Although Henry McCarter influenced his modern style, Wedderspoon eventually moved towards Garber's more impressionistic style. He remained close to Garber even after he graduated from the Academy.
Connection to Bucks County
Wedderspoon first came to Bucks County while studying with Daniel Garber at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. At that time, he lived on Phillips' Mill Road in Solebury. He spent summers in Solebury from 1925 to 1952 and then resided in Yardley from 1952 to 1976. He painted Bucks County landscapes, barns, and houses. He exhibited throughout the area.
Colleagues and Affiliations
Richard Wedderspoon (1889-1976), Bowman's Hill, c. 1960. Oil on canvas. Image courtesy of Reginald J. Birks.