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C. Hjalmar Amundsen

by on April 14, 2016

‘Cappy’ Amundsen, born Casper Hjalmar Emerson III (1911-2001).

C. Hjalmar Amundsen was born Casper Hjalmar Emerson III, in New York City in 1911.  In 1946 he legally changed his name to Hjalmar Amundsen in honor of his great-uncle Roald Amundsen, who located the magnetic center of the South Pole the year his great-nephew was born.  Hjalmar spent his childhood in Bensonhurst, New York attending grammar school in Brooklyn. He went to secondary school in Hackensack, New Jersey. He was in his early twenties when he first began painting.

Amundsen was one of the founders of the Washington Square Outdoor Art Show with Jackson Pollock and Willem de Kooning, among others. He also followed in the tradition of many East End painters by teaching summer painting classes en plein air. ‘Cappy’ worked as a commercial fisherman, did cover illustrations for ‘Motor Boating’ magazine, and became actively involved in Sag Harbor Village activities. He produced artistic work portraying harbor life on the East Coast. Amundsen painted under at least a dozen various pseudonyms. Hjalmar, who was known as “Cappy”, passed away in relative obscurity in 2001.


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