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Albert Pels


Albert Pels was born in Cincinnati, Ohio on May 7, 1910.

At the age of 21 he attended the Cincinnati Art Academy. Pels moved to New York in 1933, where he continued to study at the Art Students League, Beaux Arts and the American School, under the instruction and influence of Thomas Hart Benton, Kenneth Hayes Miller, and Alexander Brook.

Pels was a member of various artist organization, including, the National Society of Mural Painters, the Salmagundi Club, and the Society of Independent Artists. He served on the board of directors of the Arts Student League in 1939.

During the Great Depression era, Pels was on the board of the Work Projects Administration Artists (WPA). The WPA was the largest New Deal agency, employing millions to carry out public works projects. The WPA operated the Federal Art Project, which Pels was also a member.

Pels completed a mural for the Normal, Illinois, Post Office’s lobby. The State Normal School, as Pels entitled the mural, contained the Normal Schools, colleges that specialized in the education of teachers, as the subject for the mural. This project was an assignment under the Section of Fine Arts. Besides genre easel painting and murals, Pels created sculptures with trompe l'oeil effect. In

1946, Pels opened the Albert Pels Art School in New York City. He offered classes in drawling, painting, commercial art, fashion, and cartooning for all ages and levels of study. He served as the director until he sold it in the late 1980s.

Pels had also shown in a number of galleries, museums, and one-man exhibitions.  Some of them included the Macbeth Galleries, 1939; Babcock Gallery, 1941, 1945 - 46, 1949; Pulitzer Gallery, 1951; International Gallery, 1953; Laurel Gallery, 1955; Cincinnati Museum; Denver Museum;  Butler Art Institute, Youngstown, Ohio; and Rachel Davis Fine Arts, Cleveland, 1996.

He exhibited in group shows at the Babcock Gallery, New York City; Albany Museum, Albany New York; Whitney Museum of American Art, New York City; Philadelphia Museum, P.A.; Butler Art Institute; Art Students League; and Southern Art Museum.

Pels died in at the age of 88, on January 25, 1998, in New York City.