Keith Crown (1918-2010)

Photo by Paul O'Connor
Photo by Paul O'Connor


Born in Keokuk, Iowa, Keith Crown became a leading abstractionist in Southern California following World War II. His primary medium for his artworks was watercolor, and he was on the board of directors and served as President of the California Water Color Society. He attended the School of the Art Institute of Chicago from 1936-1940, receiving his BFA in 1946.

That same year, Crown joined the faculty at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles. In 1947, he had his first one-man show at the M.H. deYoung Museum in San Francisco. He was awarded a sabbatical leave in 1956 when he visited Taos, New Mexico, for four months.

Crown spent considerable time painting and writing while in Taos. In 1975, he built a house in Talpa, near Taos. Although he continued traveling widely, he stayed in Taos part of each year. After retiring in 1983 from USC as a Professor Emeritus of Art, he moved to Columbia, Missouri, where he continued to produce art. A retrospective exhibition was held to celebrate his 90th birthday in 2008 at the Perlow-Stevens Gallery at the University of Missouri.

Schools of Study

School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, IL

Partial List of Collections

Ackland Museum, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC
Cerritos College, Norwalk, CA
Long Beach Museum of Art, CA
Rio Hondo College, Whittier, CA
Springfield Museum, Springfield, MO
University of Calgary, Alberta, Canada
University of Massachusetts, Amherst, MA
University of New Mexico Art Museum, Albuquerque, NM
University of Texas Museum, Austin, TX
Weatherspoon Art Gallery, University of North Carolina, Greensboro, NC

Selected Awards

National Watercolor Society Purchase Award, 1975
Springfield Museum Purchase Award, 1974
California National Watercolor Society Watercolor West Award, 1974
California National Watercolor Society Missouri Cash Award, 1973

Selected Exhibitions

Jacqueline Anhalt Gallery, Los Angeles, CA 1977
University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana, IL 1971
Long Beach Museum of Art, Long Beach, CA 1966
Pasadena Museum of Art, Pasadena, CA 1953
M.H. de Young Museum, San Francisco, CA 1948
Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, IL 1945

Keith Crown at 203 Fine Art

Please follow the link below to view the online catalogue for the 2019 exhibition Taos Moderns in Santa Fe, organized by 203 Fine Art.

Taos Moderns in Santa Fe | Exhibition Catalogue on ISSUU

Selected Works in Our Inventory