Grenville Richard Seymour Redmond was born on March 9, 1871 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He later changed his name to “Granville Redmond” when he began his professional career.
Granville became deaf when he contracted scarlet fever at the age of 2 ½ years and he never again gained the ability to speak. His family moved to San Jose, California when Granville was four. Granville boarded at the California School for the Deaf in Berkeley, California from the time he was 8 until he graduated at 19. Upon his graduation, Superintendent Warring Wilkinson convinced the Board of Directors at the school, in recognition of Granville’s artistic and academic achievements, to pay his tuition to the California School of Design and let him continue to board at the California School for the Deaf.
Granville received the W.E.B. Award for Life Drawing in his second year at the school. The award gave him free tuition for a third year at the school. At the end of his term at the California School of Design, Granville had few prospects and knew he needed to continue his education. Once again, the Superintendent for the California School for the Deaf intervened and on Wilkinson’s recommendation, Granville was granted a two year loan by the Board of Directors to study in Paris.
Granville studied at the Academie Julian under Benjamin Constant and Jean Paul-Laurens. After three years of study in Paris and only moderate success, Granville returned to the United States in 1898, settling in Los Angeles. He opened a studio and began painting and creating illustrations for magazines.
In 1899, Granville married Carrie Annabelle Jean. The couple had three children. In 1910, the Redmond’s moved to Menlo Park, just south of San Francisco. In 1916, the family moved again to Belvedere in Marin County on the San Francisco Bay. World War I started, Granville’s sales dropped and he obtained work as a silent actor signing on with Charlie Chaplin’s studio in Marin County. He continued both professions for the rest of his life.
As his success as a landscape painter grew, Granville focused his subject matter on the California coastal range from Marin County in the North to Laguna Beach and Catalina Island in the South. His style ranged from Tonalism, (an almost monochromatic look), to a bright Impressionist palette with broken color.
Granville Redmond died of heart failure on May 24, 1935 at the age of 65.
Oakland Museum 1988
Plein Air painters of the Southland
Westphal Publishing 1986
It is impossible for artists to succeed in art unless they work with thought and true insight…one must as he paints on a canvas try and put his soul into the work.