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Indiana Governor Portrait Artist: Lucian Lupinski (b. 1918)

Lucian Lupinski

Artist, Indiana Governors' Portrait Collection

Robert D. Orr

Robert D. Orr (b. 1918)
Governor of Indiana
January 13, 1981-January 9, 1989

Artist: Lucian Lupinski, American, 1918 - 2002
oil on canvas, 37 x 51 (94.0 x 129.5)

LUCIAN LUPINSKI, the artist who painted the portrait of Governor Robert D. Orr for the official Governors' Portraits Collection can boast that and more. The flamboyant Lupinski has recently returned from Hawaii where he painted Tom Selleck for the cover illustration of the March 1987 issue of The Saturday Evening Post.

As artist -in-residence for the Post in Indianapolis, Lupinski has painted the top names in business, politics, entertainment, and world affairs, and their praise of him and his work has been unanimous. The portrait of Governor Robert D. Orr has produced the same reaction from those who have previewed it. "It's Bob Orr," said first lady Josie Orr, "and it's just wonderful." "I had watched Governor Orr on television to become familiar with his motions and characteristics," said Lupinski, who paints portraits from photographs and live sittings. The Orr portrait was completed using both.

Lupinski, who has always been active in communities in which he has resided, was most anxious to paint the Governor: "It is such an honor, and Governor Orr is a good subject." Although it was hard to keep Governor Orr still long enough for the required work, the painting was completed in 1983 and privately unveiled to family members and donors who funded this latest acquisition to the collection.

Lupinski joined the staff of The Saturday Evening Post as artist-in-residence in July, 1973. He moved to Indianapolis from Rock Island, Illinois, where he spent three years as a commercial artist. He spent ten years in Peoria after going in 1960 to work on some advertising for Caterpillar Tractor Company. While in Illinois he was active in art activities, including presidency of the Illinois Valley Art League in 1966 and 1967.

Lupinski studied under Theodore Keane at Ohio State University, at the Grand Central School of Art and the Art Students League in New York, and at the American Academy of Art in Chicago. While at Ohio State University, he was an amateur wrestler and discus thrower. While still in high school, he began doing illustrations for a newspaper syndicate.

After graduation from Woodward High School, Toledo, Ohio, Lupinski went to New York to make his mark as a commercial artist. Lupinski has given lectures and workshops on portrait painting at art groups and universities throughout the United States. He has participated in over 300 exhibits throughout the world. His murals are in the Toledo Cathedral, the Museum of Art and Industry, Chicago, and in the buildings of several religious orders in the East.

He works in oil, acrylic, watercolor, pencil, pastel, litho and tri-tech and has won awards in all of these media. Lupinski's views on art are included in a college textbook by DePauw University professor John R. Bittner, Mass Communication. Recent honors include a segment on the Indiana program in States of the Nation on C-Span.

This spring Lupinski will join Jamie Farr and others as part of Toledo's sesquicentennial reunion of famous sons and daughters. He will be inducted into the Woodward High School Hall of Fame, an honor also accorded Danny Thomas. For pleasure Lupinski paints to music. His musical impressions have interpreted such works as Hector Berlioz' Symphonie Fantastique and Rimsky-Korsakov's capriccio Espagnol.

He was born in Herkimer, N.Y., and grew up in Toledo and Cleveland, Ohio. He was married in 1955 to Rosemary Boecher, a fashion artist. They have one son, Lucian William, a graduate of Indiana University. Lupinski's signature is followed by three dots which stand for him, his wife and his son.

Source: Indiana Historical Bureau