The Burnley Gallery at The Art Institute of Seattle to Host an Exhibition of Work by Northwest Watercolorist and Art Educator Jess Cauthorn

By: The Art Institutes

July 20, 2010

The Art Institute of Seattle is proud to announce an exhibition of work by Jess Cauthorn at the Burnley Gallery, on the campus of The Art Institute of Seattle.

Mr. Cauthorn (1923-2005) is the former owner and Director of the Burnley School of Professional Art, which, in 1982, became The Art Institute of Seattle.  One of the nation’s best known watercolor artists, Mr. Cauthorn’s work is part of the permanent collection at the Seattle Art Museum, the Museum of History and Industry, the Frye Art Museum, and many others.

A gifted illustrator, Mr. Cauthorn began his artistic career with the U.S. Army during WWII.  Initially drafted as a foot soldier, Mr. Cauthorn’s talent as an artist soon became apparent, and he was commissioned to create wartime illustrations of his experiences in the South Pacific.  After training in California, he spent two years on the front with the 148th Infantry Regiment, which led the liberation of Japanese-occupied Manila. In the jungles of Bougainville and Luzon, he mixed his paints with water from his canteen, and created moving portrayals of men and machines at war.  He returned home with a Bronze Star, a Purple Heart, and a passionate determination to continue his development as an artist.

In 1959, Mr. Cauthorn purchased the Burnley School of Professional Art, and worked alongside William Cumming, Fred Griffin, Austin Dwyer, and many others in creating the premier commercial arts college in the Pacific Northwest.  A consummate educator, Mr. Cauthorn mentored generations of artists, while continuing to develop his unique and captivating style in the medium of watercolor art.

The Burnley Gallery will host more than 50 individual works by Mr. Cauthorn, representing a lifetime of artistry and innovation.  The exhibition includes watercolor and wartime illustrations, many of which have not been seen by the public in more than 30 years.  In addition, the collection will feature rare photos of Mr. Cauthorn, and information about his contribution to the rich history of art education in the Pacific Northwest.

The exhibition will run from August 16 to September 24, 2010, at the Burnley Gallery on the campus of The Art Institute of Seattle, 2323 Elliott Ave, Seattle, WA, 98121.  For more information, contact Director of Communications Mark Livingston at, or call 206.239.2562.

The Art Institute of Seattle ( is one of The Art Institutes (, a system of over 45 education institutions located throughout North America, providing an important source of design, media arts, fashion and culinary arts professionals.

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By: The Art Institutes

July 20, 2010