century association biographical archive

Earliest Members of the Century Association

View all members

Charles Vezin

Painter/Merchant (Dry Goods)

Centurion, 1912–1942

Born 9 April 1858 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Died 13 March 1942 in Coral Cables, Florida

Buried North Lyme Cemetery, Lyme, Connecticut

Proposed by Edward D. Page and Frederick Dielman

Elected 1 June 1912 at age fifty-four

Century Memorial

After spending half his years as a partner in a highly profitable wholesale dry-goods firm, Charles Vezin turned to painting and made it his career for the rest of his life. “I shook off the shackles of business to become a free man, with nothing to consider but the joy of work,” he said of his shift. He studied at the Art Students League and, forming strong likes and dislikes in the various fields of painting, expressed his opinions freely and with vehemence on the side of conservatism. As a result he was perhaps better known as a pamphleteer and a controversialist than as a painter. In 1921, for example, he hotly attacked an exhibition of impressionist and post-impressionist works at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. These terrific blasts against the newer movements in art he caused to be printed and widely distributed. As a painter he lived to see his works in many of the larger galleries and was a faithful exhibitor in the members’ shows at the Century. He served as President of the Art Students League from 1911 to 1915. In his painting years he made his home in Lyme, Conn. Centurions will probably remember him best for his earlier period when he was painting the Brooklyn waterfront and the shipping of the harbor.

Geoffrey Parsons
1942 Century Memorials