Gerrit Albertus Beneker

Artist Biography

Gerrit Beneker was born in Grand Rapids, Michigan, and began his career as an illustrator. A student at the Art Institute of Chicago as well as the Art Students League in New York, Beneker studied under John Vanderpoel, Frederick Richardson, F. V. DuMond, and Henry Reuterdahl, as well as Charles W. Hawthorne, who first instructed him in 1912 at the Cape Cod School of Art in Provincetown, Massachusetts. On Cape Cod, Gerrit Beneker painted landscapes and portraits of fishermen. Beneker was hired by the Navy of the United States in 1918 to paint posters for the war effort, the most famous of which was “Sure! We’ll Finish the Job.” Later, he held artist residencies at companies such as Hydraulic Pressed Steel, General Electric, and Rohm & Hass. He became known for his portraits of working class people and scenes of industry. He was a member of the Salmagundi Club, the Beachcombers Club, and a founding member of the Provincetown Art Association. His work is in the collections of the El Paso Museum of Art, Provincetown Art Association and Museum, and Colby College Museum of Art, among others.

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