Selden Connor Gile Biography

Born in Stow, ME on March 20, 1877, Selden Gile, after attending business college in Maine, moved to California in 1901.  He was a payroll master in Lincoln and in Oakland after 1905 for Gladding McBean Company.

His art studies were under Perham Nahl, Frank Van Sloun, Spencer Macky, Wm H. Clapp, and at the California College of Arts and Crafts.  Prior to 1914, he painted in the manner of classical California landscape painters such as William Keith.  After that time he assumed the palette and style of Impressionism-Fauvism, but remained an "individualist" in his mode of expressing the California scene.

During the 1920s, he became the dominant figure in a group of painters known as the Society of Six.  The Six were active in the San Francisco Bay area and exhibited regularly at the Oakland Art Gallery.  In 1927 Gile moved across the Golden Gate to Tiburon and, shortly thereafter, to a houseboat in Belvedere.  Destitute and an alcoholic, he died at the poor farm in San Rafael, CA on June 8, 1947 and was buried at Mt Tamalpais Cemetery.

Member: Marin County Art Association; Oakland Art League.

Exhibition: San Francisco Art Association, 1916-35; Society of Six, 1923-28; Galerie Beaux Arts (SF), 1928 (solo); California Statewide (Santa Cruz), 1929 (prize); Vallejo Art Guild, 1929 (1st prize); Oakland Art Association, 1933-36; San Francisco Museum of Art Inaugural, 1935; Smithsonian Institution 1976-77; Oakland Museum, 1981.

In: Monterey Peninsula Museum; Oakland Museum; Fleischer Museum (Scottsdale).


Source: Edan Hughes, "Artists in California, 1786-1940"; Painters & Sculptors in California: the Modern Era; American Art Annual 1929-33; Who's Who in American Art 1936-41; Society of Six; Expo to Expo; Monterey: The Artist's View; A Feast for the Eyes; American Impressionism ; SF Chronicle, 11-10-1984.