Harold Gregor, Painter of Midwestern Landscapes, Dies at 89

Harold Gregor, Illinois Landscape #226, 2010, oil and acrylic on canvas.


Harold Gregor, who is best known for his paintings of the American Midwest, has died at age 89, according to Chicago’s Richard Gray Gallery, which co-represented the artist with Santa Fe’s Gerald Peters Gallery and Milwaukee’s Tory Folliard Gallery.

Born in 1929, Gregor first gained national renown in the 1970s within the Photorealism and Abstract Expressionism movements, and his landscapes regularly feature vibrant colors and skewed perspectives. He often broke down his body of work into five categories: “Illinois flatscapes,” “Illinois landscapes,” “Illinois colorscapes,” “trail paintings,” and “vibrascapes.” The Illinois-based artist’s work is currently owned by the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, the Denver Art Museum, the Illinois State Museum, and the Columbia Museum of Art in South Carolina, among other institutions.

He received the 1993–94 National Endowment for the Arts grant and a NEA Midwest Fellowship. The same year he received his NEA grant, Gregor was awarded the Illinois Academy of Fine Arts Lifetime Achievement Award.

At various points his career, the artist taught at Chapman College in California, Purdue University in Indiana, San Diego State University, and Illinois State University, where he became a distinguished professor and retired in 1995.

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