Leaving a mark: Iconic rural Minnesota artist Charles Beck dies at 94


The ninety four-yr-previous artist died Tuesday night time, Sept. 12, in Fergus Falls, a city that benefited from his work and presence.

“Charles has been very influential on this group,” stated Amanda Cross, curator and academic coordinator at Kaddatz Galleries in downtown Fergus Falls.

“He is one of the acknowledged artists in Minnesota. Individuals will see this lovely panorama and say, ‘That is a Beck. Charlie nailed it,'” Cross says, including that folks across the nation steadily name or e mail concerning the availability of sure woodcut prints.

He was born on Jan. 23, 1923, in Fergus Falls to Herman and Nellie Beck. His father was a cupboard maker and gave his son an appreciation for working together with his arms.

After highschool, Beck attended Concordia School in Moorhead, the place his work ethic would be additional formed by painter Cyrus Operating within the artwork studios and coach Jake Christiansen on the soccer area.

His artwork research have been interrupted by World Struggle II and Beck enlisted within the Naval Air Corps to coach as a pilot. On residence for depart, he marked V-J Day together with his first date with Joyce Hagge. They might marry three years later and stay collectively for sixty nine years till his demise. The couple had two sons and a daughter.

The household settled in Fergus Falls, the place Charles labored as an indication painter and in 1960 he began educating artwork at what’s now Minnesota State Group and Technical School, the place he would stay for 28 years.

Beck’s fashion began rising at the moment, an abstracted imaginative and prescient utilizing strains and shapes to mirror rural panorama round him. In his woodcut prints, he carved tree branches deep into the block and nicked away to get the textures of subject stubble.

Whereas he painted giant earlier in his profession, later he would deliver small boards as he drove across the countryside, pulling over to color with palette knives.

He labored wooden another way, carving the types of glossy, sleek birds like area geese geese, shorebirds and naturally, loons.

“He knew the right way to get most expression from minimal element,” stated Mark Strand of Fargo, who had labored with the artist on various publications and tasks because the early Nineteen Seventies.

His workmanlike strategy gained over legions of followers who collected his work or have been influenced by it. Fergus Falls painter Scott Gunvaldson painted a portrait of his good friend, whereas poet Thom Tammaro wrote verses about taking a look at Beck’s works. When Fargo’s Lodge Donaldson opened in 2003, a room was devoted to displaying Beck’s artwork. Different items…



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