Edward Alfred Cucuel

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Edward Alfred Cucuel (American, 1875, 1954) is known for his genre paintings that include scenes of boating, leisure life, and landscape settings. He also often painted nude figures in interiors.

Cucuel was born in San Francisco, California. He attended the School of Design in San Francisco at age 14. During his later teen years, he worked as an illustrator for various local newspapers. In 1893, he enrolled at the École des Beaux-Arts and studied under Jean-Leon Gerome. Cucuel moved back to the U.S. in 1896 and settled in New York. In New York, Cucuel was able to secure numerous contract illustration jobs that allowed him to travel back to Europe. Cucuel studied for a generous amount of time in France, Italy, and Germany. In 1907, he settled in Munich where he lived for many years. Cucuel exhibited paintings at the Munich Secession and joined the Scholle group, a community of artists led by Leo Putz. In 1912, Cucuel successfully exhibited his work in Munich and began to take on the Impressionist style practiced by Leo Putz and the other artists in the group. It was in Munich where he painted in the gardens that the artist produced some of his best work, which can be described as a vibrant palette of color and Impressionist style impasto – thick, textured strokes of paint layered atop each other. From 1928 to 1934, Cucuel spent his winters in New York and summer months in Munich. When the Second World War broke out in Germany in 1939, Cucuel and his wife moved permanently to Pasadena, California where they lived until the artist’s death in 1954. Cucuel’s work is included in numerous collections and major museums around the world.