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Elmer S. Berge (1892-1956)


Elmer Berge was a well-known Norwegian-American (Minnesota) contemporary landscape and marine artist.  He was born on Finnoy Island, Norway, July 6, 1892.  As a young child, he showed a strong interest in art and began studying it when he was eight years old. He emigrated to the United Sates around 1910 via Ellis Island, and settled in Chicago, Illinois. He attended the Art Institute of Chicago and lived in that area until 1918.  


From 1918 - 1922, Berge returned to Norway and studied under the English painter Matthew Williams Thompson.  He traveled around Norway, painting the fjords and varied Norwegian landscapes.  


After his travels to Norway, Berge settled in Minneapolis, Minnesota and continued to paint.  His oil paintings of Minnesota landscapes and water scenes brought him some fame and his work was in the Minnesota State fairs of 1932 and 1936, where he won awards both years.  


He painted with several well known Minnesota artists such as Cameron Booth and Frederic Calhoun.  Berge was a member of the Swedish Institute in Minneaplois and the Minneapolis Institute of Art.  


He died unexpectedly in Minneapolis on March 3, 1956 shortly after he returned from an art exhibit he had in Rochester, Minnesota.







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