New Orleans native Herbert Frère was born in 1911 into a family full of artistic achievement. Two uncles – Theodore Frère and Pierre-Edouard Frère – were both accomplished French painters and Herbert was called to art as well.
He started his formal art education at the New Orleans Art School and then went on to study in New York at the Art Students League and Annot Art School. He also earned a degree in psychology from Louisiana State University but his true passion was art.
He was active in the Arts and Crafts Club, located in the French Quarter, holding several one-man shows there in the 1930s. He was also active in the Federal Art Project in New Orleans and contributed to the McDonogh 15 High School mural cycle project.
His work was exhibited at the Delgado Museum as well as in New York, Los Angeles and Central America in the 1930s and ’40s. Most recently, in the spring of this year, a special exhibition was held at the Ogden Museum of Southern Art displaying Frère’s portrait, still life and landscape paintings.
From 1955 until his death in 1960, Frère owned The Gallery Studio on St. Peter Street, and also painted along the Jackson Square fence. His contribution to the artistic legacy of New Orleans has been significant.
Summertime is a good time to browse the galleries of the French Quarter. And don’t forget about the artists on Jackson Square. Who knows … you might discover a
legend in the making.