Allen Terrell

Allen Terrell (American 1892-1986)

Allen Terrell was born in Riverhead, NY in 1892 where he grew up and attended High School.  The Terrell family traces its family roots back to pre-Revolutionary New England and was prominent on Long Island since the 1850s. 

Terrell studied architecture at Columbia University, and after graduation worked briefly for an architectural firm while studying painting and sculpture at New Yorks Art Students League under Edward Mc Carten. 

In 1927 Terrells interest in art let him to France.  At the American School in the Palace of Fontainebleau he studied watercolor and fresco painting with Jean Despujols and Paul Baudoin.  Later he went to Paris to study painting at various academies, such as the Julien, the Colarossi, and the Academie Scandinave.  Deciding to specialize in sculpture, he worked with Charles Despiau - his most important influence - and later with Marcel Gimond.  For several years in the late 1920s he maintained a studio in Paris and later in Rome where he continued his study of sculpture and maintained a studio.

In the mid-1930s, Terrell opened a studio in New York City at 111 East 10th Street and maintained a studio in Riverhead, Long Island at 30 West 2nd Street.  Throughout the late 1930s and all through the 1940s, he exhibited extensively at Guild Hall in East Hampton, NY, the Decorators Club in New York City, and the Village Art Center in Greenwich Village, NYC.  During these years he maintained his own gallery in Riverhead.

In 1943-44, Terrell traveled and exhibited extensively in California with one-man shows at the Stendahl Gallery, Los Angeles, the San Gabriel Artist Guild, the Pasadena Art Institute, the Laguna Beach Art Association, and the Whittier Art Association. 

Terrell was very successful as an artist winning several prestigious prizes for sculpture and watercolor.  He received a number of prestigious commissions, among them: the design of the Vermilye Medal for the Franklyn Institute, an extensive set of murals for the luxury liner S.S. America, several major paintings for the Aluminum Corporation of America, the York Club, the department store Lord and Taylor, and decorations for both Pennsylvania Station and Grand Central Station in NYC.  He was a member of the American Water Color Society and President of the Alumni of the American School at Fontainebleau.

Terrell died in 1986.

Sources: Various exhibition programs, brochures, and circulars from Terrell one-man shows in the possession of the author.

Submitted by: A. Rex Rivolo, Ph.D., Director, Roving Sands Gallery, Alexandria, VA


Fontainbleau, France 1924×

12 x 9 inch
30.5 x 22.9 cm