Artist Biography

1864 - 1950

Claes Edward Fristrom was born near Karlskrona, Sweden on January 23, 1864. As a seaman he sailed to Australia in 1888. Settling in Brisbane, he and his brother Carl Oscar (1856-1917) established a studio and cofounded the Queensland Art Society. He studied art there briefly, but remained essentially a self-taught artist. After 1903 he lived in New Zealand where he painted many landscapes and portraits of the Maori. For several years he exhibited regularly in Auckland and was a popular instructor at the Elam School of Art there. Leaving the school over a pay dispute, he sailed for California in 1915. He lived in Carmel until 1924 when he settled into a studio-home across the Golden Gate in San Anselmo at 869 San Anselmo Avenue. A plein air painter, he painted many landscapes of Marin and the Monterey Peninsula. Fristrom died in San Anselmo on March 27, 1950. Member: Auckland Society of Artists; Carmel Art Ass'n. Exhibited: Carmel Art Ass'n, 1927-36; Monterey County Fair, 1931; Society for Sanity in Art, 1939-47; Aukland City Art Gallery, 1964 (retrospective). Works held: Auckland City Art Collection; Queensland Museum.

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