J. Thomas Mulder
Watercolor, signed lower right, 11.5" by 9.5"
J. Thomas Mulder 1939-2008
"J. Thomas Mulder was born in Salt Lake City in 1939. He is a landscapist known for his desert themes painted in acrylic. His paintings are noted for their rich application of paint and simplified forms. He lives in Salt Lake City.
Mulder attended Nizam College in Hyderabad, India and earned a BA from the University of Utah in 1957. He also attended the University of Illinois, the University of California at Fresno, and earned an MFA from the University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa in 1977.
Mulder has been represented by Phillips Gallery in Salt Lake and has exhibited his work at the Utah Arts Festival. Chile and Tomatoes is an example of his work. Acqua Pura (1991) is featured in the Springville Museum of Art permanent collection. Patterns, Santa Fe (1987) was featured in the Springville museum of Art spring salon." - Utah Artists Project
From his Salt Lake Tribune Obituary, Published Dec. 5, 2008:
"J. Thomas Mulder, a Salt Lake City native and painter known for his striking use of vibrant colors and strong, simple design of scenes, died of colon cancer Nov. 24.
A respected figure of the local art scene, Mulder worked as banquet manager for the original Hotel Utah before making his mark at Salt Lake City's Phillips Gallery and Park City's Kimball Art Center. Those who knew him said the expertise with color and light in his paintings was drawn from his many travels through what he called the "sun-belt" locations of India, Italy and the Mediterranean, Mexico and the Southwest United States.
"His paintings were very simple themes, with simple structures and beautiful clean colors and unbroken spaces," said Susan Gallacher, painter and owner of Kings Cottage Gallery, who knew Mulder for 30 years. "He was very gentle, sweet man. He will be missed."
The son of late Gweneth Gates Mulder and William Mulder, a distinguished professor of English at the University of Utah, he was born March 14, 1939, and graduated from East High School and the University of Utah before attending the Nizam College in Hyderabad, India, for one year. He later completed his M.F.A. degree from the University of Alabama in 1977. His "Chile and Tomatoes" painting, the result of a trip to Mexico, hangs in the Salt Lake County Art Collection.
Helen Mulder, his step-mother, said his time spent in India among the nation's colorful markets and women wearing vibrant scarves and stoles was instrumental in forming his artistic vision at an early age. After spending time in a tent village in New Delhi, a teenage Mulder hitchhiked to the Turkish border to fly his way to London and back home.
He left many paintings behind that have never been exhibited. "We hope to have a commemorative show at some point," Helen Mulder said.
Toward the end of his life he split time between his home in Salt Lake City's Avenues neighborhood and work at his Captain Captain Studios outside downtown.
Paul Mulder, his half-brother and a local Salt Lake City actor, said that while his brother struggled financially as an artist he never neglected it due to those difficulties, instead traveling to galleries and shows throughout his life."