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Henry Oliver Walker Edit Profile


Henry Oliver Walker was an American painter of figures and portraits best known for his mural decorations.


Walker was born in Boston, Massachusetts on May 14, 1843.


In 1879, he went Paris, France to study painting under Léon Bonnat at the École des Beaux-Arts. He was a pupil of Leon Bonnat, Paris, and painted the figure and occasional portraits, but later devoted himself almost exclusively to mural decoration.


Returning to Boston in 1882, he opened a studio, but several years later he relocated to New York City. In 1888, at the suggestion of Thomas Dewing, he established a studio in Cornish, New Hampshire. In Cornish he was part of the "Cornish Arts Colony" that included such artists as Dewing, Augustus Saint-Gaudens, Maxfield Parrish, Louis St. Gaudens, Charles A. Platt, and Kenyon Cox.

Walker is known for his ideal mural compositions, the first of which appeared in the Library of Congress. Other decorations were painted for the Minnesota State Capitol Building, the Massachusetts State House, and the Appellate Court Building, New York City.

Walker lived in Lakewood New Jersey for over two decades; he passed his summers in Windsor, Vermont, and during the last decade of his life, Belmont Massachusetts.

Walker died in Belmont, Massachusetts.


  • The National Academy recognized his talent at figure painting in 1895 when it awarded him the Clarke Prize.


He was elected to the Society of American Artists in 1887.


  • Artists

    The major influence on this work was Pierre Puvis de Chavannes.


In 1888 he married Laura Marquand, a textile designer and decorative artist.

Laura Marquand