Walter Chapman: People, Places, and Things

July 1-August 16
Perrysburg Municipal Building,  201 Indiana Avenue
Viewing hours are 8am-4:30pm  Monday- Friday

Special Note:
The City of Perrysburg will honor Walter Chapman with a special acknowledgment Tuesday,  July 16  at the City Council meeting,  6:30 pm.  Residents of the Perrysburg area are encouraged to meet and greet Walter and Jean Chapman  shortly before the start of the city council meeting

Exhibit details:
At age 102  Walter Chapman’s art career has spanned more than 80 continuous years.  He has garnered a  long list of awards  includes a Bronze Star for combat art during World War II.  His historic wartime renderings  have been published in numerous books.  Many of his wartime pencil sketches  are archived in the Brown University Military Collection.

Mr. Chapman’s paintings can be found in the permanent collections of the Springfield Museum of Art in Missouri; The Southwest Museum of Art in Arizona; The Federation of Societies Purchase Award collection in Toledo; The Canaday Library in the University of Toledo; The Zanesville Center for the Arts and the Rockefeller Library in Rhode Island.   The Toledo Museum of Art honored him with a retrospective exhibition in 1988 which recognized 50 years of artistic achievements.  In 2012 The City of Sylvania marked Mr. Chapman’s 100th birthday by inducting him into the Sylvania Distinguished Artists Hall of Fame and hung 100 banners from light poles along Monroe and Main Street featuring reproductions of three of his paintings.

In addition to being a revered painter, he was a highly regarded art teacher, art juror, and lecturer who shared his knowledge and  techniques with hundreds of students who have carried on his legacy through their art and art careers.  Jean and Walter Chapman owned and operated The Chapman Art Gallery in Sylvania for over 30 years.  Currently  Mr. Chapman’s home studio in Sylvania is listed as a historical point of interest in the community.

The exhibit  is filled with images of unique people ranging from a stoic historic reenactor called a Soldier’s Portrait to a motion filled painting of a New Orleans Jazz Band.  Walter painted all over the world, the exhibit contains many beautiful watercolor paintings inspired by travel as well as local beauty as close as the Maumee.  The collection shows Walters interest in ordinary things that he painted for purely for the decorative aspects that inspired him.  A flower cart filled with flowers hangs next to a  painting of a dilapidated building.  The opposing scenes exemplify how inspired Walter Chapman is by the people, places, and things around him.

There are numerous pieces in the show  from the Chapman’s private collection that have never been shown to the general public.  The Traditional Indian Dancers were subjects  Mr Chapman and his wife Jean  met in India who willingly modeled for him.  The two paintings illustrate his artistically inspired regard for the cultural beauty of India’s traditional dance and attire.  The vibrant painting of the female dancer was painted with a brilliant combination of technical skill and creative restraint  that give the dancer the appearance of movement within the painting.

With the exception of select pieces most of the paintings in the show are for sale.   If anyone is interested in buying a painting they will have the rare opportunity to buy it directly from the Chapmans. The work is reasonably priced and the Chapmans enjoy sharing  the stories behind the paintings.  The exhibit  includes several of Mrs. Chapman’s  favorite paintings,  as well as Walter Chapman’s favorite painting destinations and portraits of intriguing people they’ve met along the way.

Publications containing Mr. Chapman’s World War II renderings:

  • The 84th Infantry Division: Battle of Germany by Theodore Draper, Viking Press
  • The Liberators: America’s Witnesses to the Holocaust,  by Michael Hirsh
  • World War II Art of Walter H. Chapman, by Mark Miller

To view Chapman’s wartime sketches in the Brown University collection visit:

IMG_0189 Plaza at Oaxaca_watercolor_Walter Chapman News Orleans Jazz Band_watercolor_Walter Chapman

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