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Anton Jesse Rasmussen

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Anton Jesse Rasmussen

(Salt Lake City, Utah, 1942 - 2015)

Anton Rasmussen is a native-born, Utah painter. He was born on November 12, 1942, and served in the United States Coast Guard as an aviation flight crewman. After returning to Utah, he elected to stay, pursuing his graduate degree at the University of Utah. Both of his degrees, a BFA in 1967, also from the University of Utah, and an MFA in 1974, emphasized drawing and painting. Since that time, Rasmussen has been both a teacher and also an administrator at the University of Utah and at Southern Utah University, a teacher at Utah State University, and the director of the Bountiful/Davis Art Center. Rasmussen and his wife, Pamela, share an enthusiasm for painting and an inborn delight in exploration and discovery. These qualities are well communicated in Rasmussen's work. He says, "My painting covers a broad spectrum of subject matter and approach including abstract, representational, and figurative. I am concerned that my students learn to think visually and develop a vocabulary of technique based on a sound fundamental understanding of art principles that will allow them to express their ideas effectively." As mentioned, Rasmussen's work includes abstraction. He is noted as "a talented organic abstractionist in small easel work as well as large murals." Producer Claudia Sisemore has featured him as the subject of the film "Anton Rasmussen: Abstractions from Nature." Much of Anton's abstract work is untitled. He feels the implications of the abstraction provoke highly personal responses from the viewer, and he does not want to risk the possibility of interfering with these responses by labeling the works with reference-giving titles. While his abstract work is well-appreciated, Rasmussen is perhaps best known for his large paintings and his mural works, which are included in many private and public collections. One of his most recognized works is at the Salt Lake International Airport: each terminal features seven of his grand-scale oil paintings. "Each piece captures a distinctive scene from Utah's unique topography." In addition, Rasmussen has completed many large public commissions concentrating on the landscape of Southern Utah. These paintings can be seen at a national park, several college campuses, hospitals and other public buildings throughout the state. In addition to having exhibited extensively in Utah, Rasmussen has exhibited his paintings nation-wide and in Paris, France. He was in France for a 1976 "American Painters in Paris" show. In addition, he is a leader in the art community, having served on several panels including the Visual Arts Advisory Panel and the Community Outreach Advisory Panel for the Utah Arts Council, the Central Committee at the Braithewaite Fine Arts Gallery, and the Cedar City Art Committee. Rasmussen also serves as an art consultant across Utah. Anton Rasmussen's work can be found in many permanent collections including at the Salt Lake International Airport, the Southern Utah University Student Center, LDS Hospital, Zion National Park Visitor's Center, Utah Museum of Fine Arts, and the Springville Museum of Art.

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