Oliver Grimley


Oliver Grimley was born in Norristown, Pennsylvania on June 30, 1920, and he knew from an early age that he would pursue a career in art. He studied at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts (PAFA) from 1939 to 1942. After serving in World War II, he returned to the academy on the G.I. Bill, receiving a B.F.A. and an M.F.A. from the University of Pennsylvania.

Grimley preferred to work in pen and ink as a medium, but he also produced works in oils, stone, bronze, acrylic, paper-mache, pencil, and pastels. His work can be found in his books Humble Frog and Valley Forge, private collections from California to New Jersey, on bank walls and zoo gates, in museums and in the works of countless students he trained over his decades teaching.

An accomplished PAFA teacher from 1951 to 2010, he was given the dean’s award for distinguished service in 2011. Grimley also taught at the Hussian School of Art and Pat Witt’s Barn Studio of Art. he was an active member of both the greater Norristown and Conshohocken art leagues.

Grimley said, “My ideas come from my experiences, my background in religion, studies of the great books and contemporary writings. My ideas of sense of humor have their genesis in my belief that light ideas are often taken too seriously, and serious ideas are often taken too lightly. My compositions are criticisms of myself as part of mankind.”

EXHIBITIONS & COMMISSSIONS: Metropolitan Museum of Art, Whitney Museum of American Art, Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Library of Congress, Philadelphia Art Alliance, Woodmere Art Museum, Philadelphia Eagles Football Club, SUN Oil Company, Commonwealth Federal Savings & Loan, American Bank & Trust Company of Pennsylvania, Hamilton Reliance Savings Association, listed in “Who’s Who in American Art”.

Medium: Pen & Ink with Acrylics
Category: Realism
Category: Surrealism

These are a few of Oliver Grimley’s pieces -please click the thumbnail for a larger view.