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As It Was: Realist Painter Geoffrey Lewis Moves to Ashland, Ore.

In 1971, internationally known, realist painter Geoffrey Lewis his wife and four children moved from San Francisco to Ashland Ore.

Lewis had paintings in galleries around the United States and had even given a one man show at the Palace of the Legion of Honor in San Francisco.  Within a year he had commissions to keep him busy for some time.

While in the Merchant Marines and the Army during World War II, Lewis had the opportunity to see the great masters in European museums.  He came home to study art and then acting. Eventually Lewis joined an ad agency where he created the character “Pepe” for Standard Oil in Latin America, a figure that rivaled the comic strip “Peanuts” in popularity.

In Ashland, Lewis found ways to give back to the community.  He was made an honorary member of the Fire Department, became a founding board member of the State Ballet and Oregon Theater Wing of the Rogue Valley, and found time to deliver Meals on Wheels.

Lewis died in 2005, having made his mark in the art world and in his community.

Source: "Geoffrey Lewis." , Ashland Daily Tidings, 12 Jan. 2005, dailytidings.com/news/obituaries/geoffrey-lewis. Accessed 8 Dec. 2018.

O'Harra, Marjorie. "A Bit About An Artist." Medford Mail Tribune, 31 May 1972, p. 2D.

Alice Mullaly is a graduate of Oregon State and Stanford University, and taught mathematics for 42 years in high schools in Nyack, New York; Mill Valley, California; and Hedrick Junior High School in Medford. Alice has been an Southern Oregon Historical Society volunteer for nearly 30 years, the source of many of her “As It Was” stories.