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Lee Fritz Randolph
(1880 - 1956)
Lee Fritz Randolph of San Francisco, California, was an important visiting art teacher in Utah. The Brigham Young University, University of Utah, and Utah State University art programs had been traditionally conservative through the years. In the summer of 1927, Calvin Fletcher, head of the art department of Utah State, went south to Provo for a session of painting under Lee R. Randolph, who was just then a visiting instructor at BYU. Randolph was concerned about the rather traditional artistic approaches that the vast majority of Utah artists were then pursuing and mentioned this observation to Fletcher. Then, since he had been thrown into a quandary because of the San Franciscan's obviously correct appraisal of the local situation, the Utahn finally decided upon a plan of attack for at least updating the program at his own school beginning the following year. Returning to Logan at the end of the term, Fletcher conferred with H. Reuben Reynolds and others of the Utah State staff, and it was resolved that a number of visiting artists, or "artists-in-residence," be invited to the campus starting the next year. Randolph returned to Utah in 1930 as the first of three visitors, and was followed within the subsequent decade by Otis Oldfield and Ralph Stackpole of San Francisco, Birger Sandzen of Kansas, B. J. O. Nordfeldt of New Mexico, and Ralph Pearson of New York. The impact of these visits upon the caliber of the Logan program was decisive through that period and beyond.