Robert Sargent passed away in Rutland, Vermont on October 12, 2014. The following is a copy of his obituary which
appeared in the Rutland Herald on 10/25/2014:
Robert E. Sargent
Robert E. Sargent of Rutland and Northfield, Vermont, passed away at Mountain View Nursing Home in Rutland on October
is the author and illustrator of children’s books and also an artist
who has been widely collected since the 1950s by celebrities, and
Robert was born in Vermont in 1933, and
educated in both Liberal Arts and fine arts in Vermont and Paris. Robert
Sargent by the age of 23 had authored fifteen children’s books with one
publishing only in Finnish.The rest were published by Simon &
Schuster in English.
He is often called “The New Hans Christian
Andersen” in Denmark, where Hans Christian Andersen is a national hero.
For more than 9 years he also resided and worked in Paris, Copenhagen,
Helsinki, Vienna, Zurich, Rome Capri and Madrid.
He produced and
wrote his own fairy tales in which he added classical music. These
evolved into successful television programs for children which aired
weekly on the Sweden Television Program Exchange and expanded well into
Europe over the years.
He has been the recipient of many awards
for his drawings, illustrations, paintings and book jackets. He has sold
many of these works in over 750 galleries throughout the United States
and Canada since he returned to the USA in 1965 when he also owned his
own Art Gallery in Austin Texas.
Robert is survived by his
Sister Patricia Jurach of Southwick, Massachusetts, and two Nephews,
Brian Mercier of Suffield, Connecticut, and Robert Jurach of Southwick,
The Family would like to thank the Staff at
Mountain View Nursing Home for their care of Robert during his final
years. Funeral services will be handled privately.
Stationed at Monterey, California, in 1954. He took first place at a large San Francisco art exhibit and received
a "Key to the City of San Francisco".
Robert E. Sargent was born in Northfield, Vermont in 1933, attended Northfield schools, and graduated from Northfield
High School in 1951.
Shortly after graduation he was injured after heavy rains created a landslide, which severely
injured his knee, but gave him time to focus on his artistic talents.
In the spring of 1952 he began his journey
away from Vermont, which led him into New York, working in Lake George, and Rhinebeck.
he worked as a bartender and met many celebrities, including Mrs. Roosevelt, to whom he served ginger ale. It was she,
who connected him with the art department of UNICEF, where he later created Christmas cards and a calendar. Later on
in his life he would again run into her in Berlin, Germany.
Sargent then went on to live in NYC and
worked at several odd jobs, including filing at RCA and waiting tables at the Waldorf Astoria. In his spare
time he drew lots of sketches and worked on building his portfolio.
He framed some sketches and participated
in large 3 week street art show on 6th Avenue. It was here that one of his drawings took first prize in a
huge 8-10 block show. His first prize award was awarded by NYU, and was a year of instruction with noted artist, Sam
With his success he began to display his art at the Henrietta Stoner Gallery where he sold much of his
work to celebrities. He also began to do art for Broadway shows, and continued to meet and sell much of his work to
many well known actors. These connections brought him new job opportunities in Hollywood, California, and working for
Columbia Pictures in 1953
The Korean War was raging and Robert was drafted by the Army and sent to Fort Ord near
Monterey, California and assigned to Special Services. He continued his artwork by designing posters and program materials
for the Army.
When he had time off, Sargent would spend his time drawing landscapes of Canary Row in Monterey
and the Big Sur coastline. He entered some of these in a very large San Francisco art show where he again took top honors
and was awarded a "Key to the City of San Francisco". This work then went on to a permanent exhibit at the Pentagon
in Washington D.C.
By May, 1955, he was assigned to Yakima Washington where he created a series of drawings
on Army life slated for national publication. This was to be his last work for Uncle Sam.
life, he moved back to NYC, but kept his connections with a number of West Coast galleries.
However it was always Robert's
dream to travel, and his large pool of celebrity connections had given him lots of references and addresses of their friends
for him to look up. One of his clients was Hildegarde, who had attended art school in Berlin. He had made
several drawings both for her and of her, and she gave him many addresses in Germany and France.
He moved to
Paris, France and went to draw at the Beaux Arts school. From his base in Paris, he would often take trips to many
other countries European countries.
Eventually moving to Rome. It was in Europe where he ventured into
color in his work.
In later years reflecting on these 2 great cities he would say, "Rome is a beautiful city in
orange cream and light yellow faded buildings. It is a city that should always be seen in the sun. Paris is purple-grey-blue,
and is beautiful in grey overcast or rain showers."
Friends and Contacts made by Robert Sargent
Eleanor Roosevelt, Maxwell Bodenheim, Luigi Lucioni, Sam Francis,
Janet Blair, Paul Mcgrath, Tod Andrews, Jack Whiting, Marshall Thompson, Dean Harens, Joan Whetmore, Donald Symington, Ted
Maturna, Kay Ballard, Richard Morris, Henriette Stoner, Mr. Koenig of Koenig Studios, Nancy Walker, Marilyn Monroe, Douglas,
Jan Sterling, Hildegarde Knef, Claude Cassigne, Micheline Presle, Mildred Dunnock, William Hayter, Consuelo Rubio, Anita Ekberg,
Steve Reeves, Charlton Heston, Marco Zovatini, Ceaspare Zovatini, Vitorio Desica, Enzio Raganzini, Audrey Hepburn, Baron Cottreau,
Linda Christian, Richard Basehart, Gracie Fields, Bridget Bardot,