Past Gallery Exhibit – The Art of Clyde Harold Wortham

Spanish church

Clyde Harold Wortham (1909 – 1974) was born in Oklahoma but moved to Galveston during his youth. A graduate of Ball High School, Wortham went on to study at the Yard School of Art in Washington, D.C. and the Art Students League in Woodstock, New York.


Much of Wortham’s adult life was spent abroad, where he was well known as both a painter and an authority on art restoration.

Primarily known as Harold Wortham, the artist’s talents as an oil painter are exemplified by his many vibrant still life paintings.

Wortham exhibited his first one-man show at the Rosenberg Library in 1942. With the outbreak of World War II, he served in one of twelve missions designed by the U.S. Army Medical Corps to prepare an art record of the war and its casualties. After the War, in 1953, he held his second solo exhibition at the Rosenberg Library.

Clyde Harold Wortham

In 1950, Wortham moved to Madrid, Spain, to begin advanced studies in art conservation and was elected a Fellow of the International Institute of Arts and Letters in 1961. Besides restorations for museums and churches, he restored masterpieces for the families of the Duke of Huete, Duke of Estremera, Duchess of Andria, Marquis of Lastra, and the Countess of Oropesa.

Two years after Wortham’s death in 1974, King Juan Carlos of Spain posthumously bestowed upon him the Order of Isabelle the Catholic at a one-man show of his works at the Jasper Galleries in New York. Wortham’s training allowed him to produce works of classical technique with influences from French Impressionism, Japanese wood block prints, and Neo-Romanticism.

It was Mr. Wortham’s wish that his collection become part of the Rosenberg Library’s permanent art collection following his death. We are proud to own over forty of his works.