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Maine Artist Virtual Exposition

William Muir

Sculptor/Watercolorist William Muir 1902-1964 was born in the wheatlands of North Dakota and studied art at Minneapolis School of Art with Charles S. Wells and Richard Lahey. He then received a fellowship to The Arts Students League, NYC, and continued his education with Leo Lentelli. There he met his future wife, Emily Lansing. In the early years of their marriage they worked for Moor McCormack Steamship Company building dioramas and traveling the world painting and doing research for their three dimensional assignments. Muir's sculptures were done in beautiful tropical hardwoods and are semi abstract forms emanating sensuous warmth. They seem to be born of the earth like the plant forms that inspired him. In 1959 Muir returned to working in granite which was native to Stonington's shores. Due to the material, this work appeared more austere. The New York Time Magazine stated that "nature by all her wisdom cannot seem to match by accident what Muir shapes by design..." . Completing most sculptures between the late 1940's and early 60's when welden metal was what was happening in the world of sculpture, Muir never the less decided to leave NYC and live in the remote fishing village of Stonington, Maine on Deer Isle, where he and his wife had summered as children. There they were able to have separate studios for woodcarving, painting, clay and stone sculpting. At age 38 Muir enlisted in the Navy. Of particular note are watercolors done during the war at the Brunswick Air Station, where Bill was stationed as a pharmacist mate. Muir went on to put his sculptural skills to use creating artifical limbs for wounded airmen. His work was exhibited during his lifetime at the Chicago Art Institute, The Brooklyn Museum, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, America House, The Sculpture Center and the American Federation of Art in a show "Maine; Fifty Artists of the Twentieth Century", among others. In his home state he was in shows at Colby, Bowdoin, UMaine at Orono, The Farnsworth Museum and The Portland Museum of Art. His watercolors and sculpture are for sale through his wife's gallery in Stonington, where to this day she can still be found painting and sculpting.

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