top of page

BERNARD WYNNE (1920-2009)

"Construction of the Arroyo Seco Parkway"

"Construction of the Arroyo Seco Parkway"

18" x 20", Watercolor on Paper 11134

Bernard Wynne (1920 - 2009)


Born in Indianapolis, Ind., on May 13, 1920, he moved to California with his family in 1925.  He was a resident of Sierra Madre since 1927.


Wynne studied art at the Pasadena Art Institute and with such recognized artist-instructors as James Chapin, Ejnar Hansen, S. McDonald Wright and Norman Rockwell.  He worked for many years as an illustrator and draftsman, all the while submitting paintings to important art shows and winning numerous prizes, until he was able to devote his time entirely to painting.


Recognized for his artistic talent since the age of 14, by age 30 Wynne was listed in Who's Who in American Art.  His many achievements include the Ventura Forum of Arts First Award; Bryan Waller Award at the Long Beach Museum of Art; Home Saving and Loan Purchase Prize at the Los Angeles All-City Outdoor Festival; Artists of the Southwest Award; Hoosier Salon Prize of Distinction in Indiana; and participation in a traveling exhibit in Ludwigshafen, Germany.


Wynne was best known for bringing to life the terrain of California's deserts, mountain, meadows, rolling hills and coastal beauty.  He spent many years painting and photographing the many faces of California's beauty.  His style was one of realism, which he accomplished using great detail, brilliant light and strongly contrasting shadows.  His portrayals of the California desert, in particular, have become collectors' items.

He served in the United States Army during World War II, spending three years in the Pacific Theater.


Commenting on his philosophy of art, Wynne stated, “Art is beauty personified. It feeds the soul and soothes the mind. I do not look upon art as a means to making a statement; rather I paint to elevate the senses. While I can appreciate the many styles and techniques artists have invented over the past century, my heart lies within realism. Though I include impressionism in my style of art, I like to experience the purity of art when nature appears on canvas as it does in the wild.”

Leslie B. (Bernard) Wynne, Jr., died at his home in Sierra Madre, California, on November 15 at the age of 89.  He is survived by his wife of 60 years, Lorena Gouaux Wynne, two sons Leslie B. Wynne III, M.D. and Leonard Neil Wynne, three daughters Mary Forney, Leontine Bajer and Laura Forney, and six grandchildren.


Information courtesy of Mary Wynne Forney.



bottom of page