Sheeler, Charles,1883–1965, American painter and photographer, b. Philadelphia, studied at the School of Industrial Art there and later at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts under William M. Chase. With Chase he made two visits to Europe to study art. His characteristic style is a rational, cool simplification in planes and volumes of industrial forms, rural buildings, and Shaker furnishings, although he fully explored the realistic possibilities of these subjects as well. His photographs exhibit a similar simplification and impersonality. Rolling Power (Smith College) exemplifies Sheeler's most realistic painting style; Midwest, 1954 (Walker Art Center, Minneapolis) is an example of his later, more abstract manner.
See C. Troyen and T. E. Stebbins, Jr., Charles Sheeler (2 vol., 1987).
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Sheeler, Charles(1883–1965) painter, photographer; born in Philadelphia, Pa. A leading precisionist painter, he painted industrial structures with an architect's eye and turned to photography to support his art. Successful in both mediums (1912–62), his clients included architects, private patrons, and museums.
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.