A Newport working Studio Gallery

55 Bellevue Avenue, Newport RI 02840
401-849-9166

Richard Grosvenor

Richard Grosvenor was born in St. Jean de Luz, France in 1928, but has spent most of his early and adult life in Newport. Rhode Island. It was his teacher, Richard S. Meryman at the Groton School in Groton Massachusetts that opened the world of painting to him. Richard said, “His whole thing was sunlight.” Others that influenced his early years were Charles Curtis Allen and George Demetrios of Rockport Maine. In 1951, he graduated with an A.B. degree in Fine Arts from Harvard University.

After graduating from Harvard, he was soon employed as a commercial artist for Electric Boat Company of General Dynamics. In 1953, he was appointed to head the Art Department of St. George’s School in Newport. where he taught for 40 years. He was honored when the school included his name on the new Fine Arts Building.  In 1990, Dick established, with four other artists, the co-operative Spring Bull Gallery at the corner of Spring and Bull Streets in Newport.  The gallery later moved to 55 Bellevue Avenue and is a thriving enterprise to this day.

Richard is best known for his watercolors, oils, and multi-paneled paintings. His work reflects the sea and coast and since he is a pilot, his paintings have a certain perspective that comes from being airborne. All of Richard’s paintings are rooted in a sense of place and his affinity for Narragansett Bay. “I keep going back because the seasons, the weather, the light, are changing. You have clouds, shadows, extreme fog, and light flashing off the water. It is never the same.”

His work is included in many communities, corporate and private collection throughout the country. He was selected by the White House Historical Society to paint a scene of the White House for their Bi-Centennial Calendar for the year 2000. The Newport Art Museum honored Richard with a 50-year retrospective of his artwork in 2000. The monies raised from the dinner honoring him at the closing of the retrospective are to be used to finance the purchase of new art works for the museum’s permanent collection. Richard was commissioned to paint a watercolor, by the Tall Ships Committee to commemorate the visit to this city of the Tall Ships in June 2000. It appeared on a commemorative envelope issued by the US post office on June 30, 2000. He has won numerous awards at many local galleries, including the Providence Art Club, Newport Art Association, and the Rhode Island Watercolor Society. One of the multi-paneled works was used as the cover of the Annual Report for Textron Corporation. Richard is the author and illustrator of “Newport, An Artist’s Impressions of Its Architecture and History.”

His creativity extended beyond his painting to all his endeavors.  He designed and hand-built his house atop a large rock outcropping behind the house he grew up in Newport. He and Margot happily lived there for 39 years, before they moved back into Newport to the studio that was owned by artists, William Trost Richards and later Albert Sterner. Sterner had sketched a portrait of Dick’s mother before she married his father. He designed and hand-built a number of water-craft including catamarans in the 1970’s that featured wing masts.  He finally built a kit aircraft called “Buttercup”.  This was a single person plane, a “Quickie”, designed by Bert Rutan, which he flew for several years. A portion of Buttercup’s rudder still hangs on the wall at Spring Bull Gallery.  He was married to Margot Sullivan Grosvenor for over 68 years, and they raised four children (Richard Curtis Grosvenor, John Kempthorne Grosvenor, James Brown Mason Grosvenor and Helene Goodman Sullivan Grosvenor).