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Timeline

1913, June 21 Born Paul Emile Antoine Fontaine  in  Worcester Massachusetts to Elzear Herman Egile Fontaine,(4/17/1898, Central Falls RI-7/1950, Worcester, MA) an undertaker and Mary Adwilda LaPlante (10/11/1896, Worcester,MA-9/1977Guadalajara, Mexico). Both were of French Canadian descent. He had two younger  brothers Russell Ellery Fontaine and Leo Elzear Fontaine.
1920-1926 Rice Square School, Worcester, MA
1926-1929 Junior High, Grafton Str, Worcester, MA
1929-1932 North High, Salisbury St, Worcester, MA. Worked at Lavoigne Drug Store, Franklin St, Worcester, MA under Frank Lavoign
1935-May-Dec Worked in  the Civilian Conservation Corp (C.C.C.).
1932-1935 Worcester Art Museum School, Worcester, MA
Between 1932 and 1940 Fontaine received six art scholarships and one traveling fellowship. In 1936 Mr. Francis Henry Taylor, then director of the Worcester Art Museum and later director of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, for the first and only time arranged for the Worcester Museum to match the museum school's highest graduating award so that Fontaine could continue his art studies at Yale.
1936 -- WPA Art Project: Painted the Springfield, Massachusetts Post Office murals designed by his former teacher Umberto Romano.
1937-39 -- While a student at Yale taught composition, drawing and painting at Cheshire Academy-, Roxbury, Conn. and at the Waterbury Art School, Waterbury, Conn. on the side.
1939 in December -- Completed work for his degree at Yale.
1940 -- Painted murals about the life of Sir Thomas More for the Burnham Stained Glass Studios, Boston, Mass. for a cathedral in Illinois.
1940 in June -- Awarded B.F.A.degree, highest honor in his class and the Winchester Wirt Traveling Fellowship, under Dean Meeks,  for further study.The scholarship was intended to be used in Europe but due to the outbreak of WWII he settled  on the Virgin Islands.
1940 --Married Virginia Hammersmith, from Milwaukee, WI and also an art student at Yale. She later proved to be an accomplished photograher, art collector and  vital to Paul's introduction into known art circles.
1940-41 -- Painted in the British Virgin Islands--Guana, Virgin Gorda, Tortola, and also Puerto Rico. One-man show at Eliza King Dooley residence, Santurci, Puerto Rico.The pleasant watercolors of local scenes became less representational as he experimented with color and rhythmical patterns of black and white.
1941 -- One-man show at Grace Horne Galleries, Boston Arts Club, Boston. All work entered in government competitions accepted and sent on tour. Five watercolors purchase by Govt. for installation in various Govt. buildings in the United States.
1942 Designed and built his own studio, "Rocky Tor", on the side of a mountain on the outskirts of Worcester. Founded the Worcester Artists Group with Herbert Barnett, head of the Worcester Museum Art School, which toured New England and the Mid-west two years.Also worked at Worcester Pressed Steel and Worcester Wire Works
1943 June -- Entered U.S.Army as combat engineer. Rose from private to Sargent. In Naples, Rome and Florence requested to do murals for officers clubs and the Red Cross. Illustrated the Official History of the II Corps. Specialized in topographical work in Headquarters of II Corps of 5th Army. Made watercolors in his spare time. As a soldier in Italy, from 1943 to 1945, his art became more abstract. After the war, he had planned to reside in Paris, but his civilian job as an illustrator with the U. S. Army Historical Division moved to Frankfurt, Germany. The year 1947 marks his total commitment to abstract painting.
1943, Dec. 27 Daughter Carol born, Worcester MA
1945,May-1946. Cartographer for Historical Division, Paris. Made maps, graphs, overlays, book cover designs etc. to illustrate the history of WWII.
1945-46 -- One-man show tour of his italian watercolors exhibited at the Milwaukee Art Institute, U. of Indiana Fine Arts Center, Ripon College, Wis.;Kalamazoo institute of Art, Fitchburg Art Center, Mass. Margaret Brown Art Gallery, Boston, Massachusetts.
May 1946-June 1953, Assistant Art Director, A.G. Graphic Section, Publications branch Frankfurt Military Post, Germany for the 7879 Publications Depot under Mr. Boatman. Made and supervised posters, displays, booklets etc for the US Army.
1948, Aug. 31,  daughter Paula born, Frankfurt Germany
June 1953-June 1969, Moved to Darmstadt. Employed at the the Stars & Stripes, as Art Director. (see Exhibitions page for complete list of art exhibits)
1956, Sept. 29, Daughter Claudia born, Frankfurt, Germany.
June 1969-June 1993. Retired to Guadalajara Mexico. Spent the first year and half in a trailer park. Painted over 50 watercolors, most all studies for later large acrylic paintings. 
1992, Virginia died, Guadalajara Mexico on February, 19,  at age of 75
1993 June -Moved to Austin Texas
1996--Died in  Austin TX January 23, 1996, age 82.

 

This site was last updated on 07/22/00
The Paul Fontaine Archive
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