Charles Rollo PETERS (1862-1928)

” “We must also note Charles Rollo Peters whose contribution to California art possesses a personal quality. Peters has made a reputation by his romantic revivals of the Spanish  architecture of old Monterey, where he lived for so many years. Technically of great ability, he loved to paint the crumbling facades and tile roofs of some moonlit Spanish adobe, and in developing the coherent textural and color qualities he achieved a very unique and personal style…. His color schemes are the rich analogues of the blue and purple of night with the complementary nuance of a small bit of orange light peeping through a half shut window. His pictures at best are convincing, imaginative, skillful in the handling of paint, and rich with sentiment and human appeal. Peters was essentially an original painter, whose ‘vork will take a lasting place among American artists.”  Eugene Neuhaus, in History and Ideals of American Art

“In addition to his artistic accomplishments, Peters was highly esteemed in social circles, and enjoyed the friendship of many intellectuals and cultured art patrons. There were times in Peters’ life when he found diversion in the company of several bosom friends, who made up the membership of the “Rose Leaf Social Club, ” which he whim sically organized. Peters, along with Joe D. Redding, Lansing Misner, Harry Gillig, and Willis Polk, comprised the total artist and art patron membership. Charles Rollo Peters, because of his noted nocturnes, has been called by many “the Prince of Darkness,” while others mourned his passing, as one of “the last of the great San Francisco Bohemians”

Read Charles Rollo Peters‘ biography in California Art Project, Volume 10.

At a glance

Birth : April 10, 1862, in San Francisco, California (United States)
Death : 1928, in San Francisco, California (United States)
Arrival in San Francisco Bay area :  Native
Married to : Kathleen Murphy (1891-1904† ), Constance Owen (1909-1920)
Occupations :  Painter


Art education, teachers : Urban Academy (San Francisco) with Jules Tavernier, Virgil Williams and Chris Jorgensen; Ecole des Beaux Arts (Paris, France) with Jean-Léon Gerome, Jules Lefebvre and Alexander Harrison; Académie Julian (Paris, France) with Fernand Cormon and Gustave Boulanger;
Relations : Dan O’Connel, Harry Gillig, Dudley Gunn, Alexander Harrison, Jack London, Lansing Misner, Willis Polk, Joe D. Redding, George Sterling, Charles Warren Stoddard, Charles G. Yale, Raymond D. Yelland, James A.M. Whistler
Patrons : Boussad Vallodon Co., Thomas B. Clarke, John Martin
Clubs, venues : Bohemian Club, Capitol Club (Monterey, California), Lambs Club (New York City), Salmagundi Club (New York City), Lotos Club (New York City)

Resources of the Bancroft Library

Peters, Charles Rollo. St. Antonio de Padua. BANC PIC 1919.002--FR. Courtesy of The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley

Peters, Charles Rollo. St. Antonio de Padua. BANC PIC 1919.002–FR. Courtesy of The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley


Peters, Charles Rollo (1912). Paintings; [catalog of an exhibition, Feb. 22 to March 6, 1912 held in the Tapestry Room of the] Hotel St. Francis, San Francisco. [San Francisco, Taylor, Nash & Taylor]. Catalog Record

Data Vizualisation : mapping of Charles Peters’s biography


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