Marion Pike was a privileged, fourth-generation Californian and a direct descendent of both Kit Carson and Benjamin Rush. Raised with the maiden name of Hewlett in San Francisco, Pike traveled extensively as a child. On a trip to Paris when she was only twelve, young Marion Hewlett saw a Delacroix retrospective exhibition at the Louvre and decided then and there to become an artist. Three years later, at 15, she entered Stanford University. Pike graduated with honors in Oriental History in June 1933 during the Great Depression. During that summer, her passion for art and painting blossomed. While vacationing in Carmel, Pike produced her first portrait of her sister. With great encouragement from painter William Ritchel, Pike moved to San Francisco where she studied oil painting with Marion Hartwell and Rudolf Shafer. The following summer provided her with an opportunity to exhibit at the Carmel Art Gallery. Her marriage to John Jacob Pike in 1935 and, subsequently, a move to Los Angeles afforded her strong social connections and a lifestyle insulated from financial difficulty. She was able to paint and continue to travel frequently until the marriage ended in divorce in 1950. Needing to support her two young children, Pike focused more seriously on painting as a source of income. At age thirty-seven, a new life developed for Pike. Her home on Muirfield Road in Los Angeles became the center of intense creative activity. She painted in her studio from noon until dawn, often entertaining a circle of friends at the same time. During this energetic time in Pike’s career, she painted a large portrait of the sculptor Cornelia Runyan, the first of her “Big Heads” as she called them. In 1955, Pike exhibited her work at the Los Angeles County Museum Annual Exhibition and then held a one-woman show at the California Palace of the Legion of Honor in San Francisco. Over 750 visitors attended the opening. Two months later, Marion Pike was honored by the Los Angeles Times as “Woman of the Year.” Other major exhibitions would follow at the Los Angeles County Museum on the three separate occasions from 1956 through 1958. In May 1958, Pike moved to Paris where she settled at the Madison Hotel on the Boulevard Saint-Germaine. While in Paris, she visited the Louvre every day to copy old master paintings. Over the next forty years, she traveled extensively dividing her time between three homes in three different countries – France, Guatemala, and the United State. She continued to accept numerous commissions (including the Time magazine cover of Ronald Reagan, then running for governor of California) and exhibited her work at select galleries throughout Italy and the United States until her death in 1998.
About the Seller
1stdibs seller since 2016
Located in Palm Desert, CA
You may also contact the seller by phone
More From This Seller
Paris Cityscape II
Marion Pike was a privileged, fourth-generation Californian and a direct descendent of both Kit Carson and Benjamin Rush. Raised with the maiden name of Hewlett in San Francisco, Pik...
You May Also Like
Jim WaidPaleo, 2015
acrylic on canvas One of Arizona’s most celebrated painters, Jim Waid, creates abstract worlds saturated with color, layered with mark, filled with rhythm and movement, and intric...
Mymn to Freedom
Represented by George Billis Gallery, NY & LA -- I was born and raised in Old Philadelphia. It is a gritty place with a lot of graffiti art and broken down buildings. I was and have...
Lydia BaumanHigh Force ( County Durham ) Original, Oil on Canvas, Exemplary Art Reviews, 2005
High Force ( County Durham ) Original, Oil on C...
Canvas, Resin, Plaster, Mixed Media, Wax, Acrylic, Panel, Pigment
Bauman is a landscape painter born in Warsaw, Poland, however now living and working in Britain looks at motifs as contrasting as part of the cultivated landscapes of the Mediterrane...
Elwood HowellUp, 2016
Abstract landscape, horizon, splashes, layers, village, cottages, fence, green, blue, gray, pink, yellow, multicolored, transitional ABOUT ELWOOD HOWELL "The greater body of my...
Trapped in New York
"Trapped in New York" is an original acrylic painting by Tom Shelton. The artist signed, titled, and dated the piece in the lower right. This piece features a forest with animals and...
Sur la cote Bretonne un soir d'Octobre
Simplicity equates clarity, and for Jean DUQUOC his recent works are synonymous with this very purpose. His works offer an honest and more direct distillation of the landscape, the s...
Blue Thing VI
Nico Munuera’s pictorial practice relates to the tradition of abstraction that pierces through the whole avant-garde and neo-avant-garde. He understands painting as an autonomous obj...
Jim WaidOutcrop, 1991
acrylic on linen Jim Waid creates abstract worlds saturated with color, layered with mark, filled with rhythm and movement, and intricately textured. His canvases barely contain the...