THOMAS CRAIG 1907-1969

Thomas Craig was born in Ontario, California. He was the youngest son of Dr. W. H. Craig, the first medical doctor in Upland, California. He had a brother and a sister who were medical doctors.

He studied botany at the University of California, Berkeley. In 1928, at age 21, he contracted tuberculosis and moved to Cathedral City, California, where he stayed for several years and began painting. After his return to the  Los Angeles area, he studied with Frank Tolles Chamberlin and Clarence Hinkle.

Watercolors became his favorite medium; he usually worked in a very wet style and for the most part chose soft colors.  His works often depicted farm or rural scenes on misty, foggy, or rainy days. Because the Northern California coast supplies this type of weather, as well as beautiful scenery, he spent as much time painting in this area as he could.

He received a Guggenheim Fellowship in the early 1940s which allowed him to travel and paint throughout the Southwest. During World War II he was a war artist and produced paintings for Life magazine. Thereafter he painted only occasionally, spending most of his time raising hybrid flowers on 250 acres north of San Diego.  He developed a prize-winning iris.

Although he actively painted and exhibited for only about twenty years, he played an important role in the development of the California Style of watercolor painting. His works were exhibited in many important shows including the California Group traveling exhibitions.

He was a member of the California Watercolor Society and the Philadelphia Watercolor Society.

Click on a thumbnail below to see an enlarged image and start a slide show of Craig works.

Paintings in the Permanent Collection:

Blue House
Signed “T. Craig”, lower right
Watercolor, 21“ x 14”, c. 1940
1941 Barbara Line Memorial purchase
Barbara Line Memorial Collection
Valued 1991: $1,975

Signed “T. Craig”, lower right
Watercolor, 24” x 30”, 1941
1942 gift of by artist

Signed “T. Craig” lower right
Oil on canvas board, 14” x 18”, c. 1940
1941 Barbara Line Memorial purchase
Barbara Line Memorial Collection

Mendocino Coast
Signed “T. Craig”, lower right
Oil, 33” x 25”, dated 1942
1942  purchase award
Valued 1987: $3,125


Events at the Museum

Artist Reception

October 6, 2019 - 2 pm to 4 pm

West End Photo Open (WEPO)
Announcement of Prize Winners at 3 pm

Mid Valley Art League

Imagination in Clay
Richard Perre

2019 Ontario Festival of the Arts

Saturday, October 19, 2019
11 am to 7 pm 
Over 50 participating visual artists
Music and dance performances
Arts Learning and Demonstrations
Mini walking tour of historic buildings
Food trucks and craft beer vendors
Free admission
in the Arts District
217 S. Lemon Ave., Ontario.

Art at Airport

CCMA is managing the public art program at the airport on behalf of the Ontario International Airport Authority and the City of Ontario Community Life & Culture Agency.Artist installations can now be seen in both Terminal 2 and Terminal 4.

Current exhibiting artists are:

Dee Marcellus Cole, Cosme Cordova, Jesus Cruz, Jr., Gina Lawson Egan, Sumi Foley, Cathy Garcia, Karen Karlsson, Sant Khalsa, Denise Kraemer, Steven Long, Cindy Rinne and Larry White.

Life Drawing Session at CCMA

Live model
Sessions are the third Thursday of the month
10 am to 3 pm
$15 -- open to all

 Open Studio at CCMA

Fridays from 11 am – 3 pm
Where artists meet to create and share their artwork in an unstructured environment.

Open Studio at CCMA is a place for artists to come together and create art in the presence of other artists. It is intended to foster creativity, exchange, conversation, encouragement and freedom of artistic expression. All artists are welcome and invited to participate.

Open Studio at CCMA is held every Friday from 11 am to 3 pm. Artists should bring all their own supplies + a sack lunch, drinks and snacks as desired. CCMA will provide a coffee maker, refrigerator and small microwave for the use of participants.
Free for CCMA members
$20 for guests

CCMA in the News

Ontario Connects

View highlights of Sheets, Sheets & Caughman CCMA/OMHA exhibition
Art for Living and Living for Art
by clicking on the title

Joe Blackstock

Inland Valley historian Joe Blackstock visits CCMA to view the nine paintings of the Barbara Line Memorial Collection. Click here to view article.
 IEShineOn, an online source for events and activities in the Inland Empire, featured CCMA. To view the article, click here.

Suzanne Sproul

Inland Valley Daily Bulletin columnist Suzanne Sproul reports on the Sheets, Sheets & Caughman exhibit Art for Living and Living for Art. To view the article, click here. Read about CCMA's 75th anniversary in 2016 by clicking here. 

David Allen
Inland Valley Daily Bulletin columnist David Allen visits CCMA's outdoor sculpture at the front of the museum. The sculpture was created by Fullmer Construction superintendent Gary Rue entirely from materials leftover from construction the parking lot next door. Click here to see a photo and read David's blog.

Trevor Summons

Click here  or click here to read about CCMA
in Trevor Summon's column

Foothills Reader

Click here to read about CCMA
in the Foothills Reader

217 S. Lemon Ave
Ontario, CA 91761-1623

Free Admission
Thursday through Sunday
noon — 4:00 pm

Closed Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day

Rent the Museum for your event

The Museum is available year-round as a venue for compatible events of small to medium-sized groups. For more information, including rental rates, available days and times, and floor plan, click here.

 217 S. Lemon Ave, Ontario, CA 91761 • 909.463.3733 • • Thursday-Sunday, noon - 4 pm • Free Admission