Everett Longley Warner
In 1967, when I acquired this small oil from the Grand Central Gallery, I had little idea of who Everett Warner was; any significant recognition of the artist in terms of exhibition or catalogue was a full twenty-five years away. Warner’s life does mirror the classic artist’s quest to produce meaningful work and continually improve. At the young age of eighteen he landed a job as an art critic for the Evening Star in Washington, D.C. He had already been studying with Hobart Nichols. His life’s travels took him to Europe; to Gloucester; to a friendship with Twachtman, New York; and eventually to Old Lyme in 1909. Here the impact of European study and the exposure to Hassam (page 91) and Metcalf in Old Lyme solidified his painting style in keeping with this art colony. Success seemed to come easily until after the end of World War I and Warner’s service; perhaps his work lacked meaning or public tastes were changing. In an abrupt move, he basically left his wife and family and moved to New York City, settling into the Fulton Fish Market area. From 1922 to 1924, Warner produced a staggering series of monumental New York City scenes, many in snow, that stand up to the best of Hassam or Wiggins. Then in 1924 he moved with his family to Pittsburgh and a teaching assignment. The small painting in the collection is entitled Overlooking Pittsburgh and appealed to me because of the mixture of a rural image in the foreground and a sprawling industrial city in the distance. Again, extraordinary Pittsburgh images were realized, yet Warner seems to have been eclipsed by Aaron Gorson for immediate recognition as a painter in Pittsburgh. Like many artists, the post- Depression period saw his work and reputation in decline as modernism was on the ascendancy and, it seems, Everett Longley Warner slipped from public awareness.