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Executive Art Assistant to Gerald Peters
Gustave Baumann was born in Magdeburg, Germany, but grew up in Chicago from the age of 10. After studying at the Art Institute of Chicago and working as a commercial artist, he returned to Germany in 1905 to study the art of color woodcuts. Following his year of study in Germany, Baumann, in need of income, resumed work as a commercial artist. However, upon winning the Gold Medal for printmaking at the 1915 Panama Pacific International Exposition in San Francisco, Baumann was asked to organize the first exhibition of American woodcut prints at the Art Institute of Chicago, thus refocusing his efforts towards traditional fine arts.
After spending time at artist colonies in Brown County, Indiana, and Provincetown, Massachusetts, he moved to Taos in 1918 and then settled in Santa Fe. He was an active participant in the art community and was also the regional coordinator for the Public Works of Art Project of the Works Progress Administration in 1934 and became a fellow of the School of American Research in 1952. Baumann remained in Santa Fe for the rest of his life producing not only the color woodcuts he would gain renown for, but also oils, sculpture, furniture, toys, hand-made marionettes, as well as writing plays and poetry.