Rinaldo Cuneo

1877 - 1939

American Impressionist Painter, Muralist

Rinaldo Cuneo Biography

Rinaldo Cuneo was raised in the North Beach area and was a member of a large Italian family of musicians and artists of whom six were founders of San Francisco?s Tivoli Opera Company. After graduating from high school, he spent three years in the Navy during the Spanish American War. He then returned to San Francisco and entered the mark Hopkins Institute under the able guidance of Piazonni and Matthews, and in 1911 he furthered his art studies in London and Paris.

His first exhibition was at Helgesen?s Gallery, San Francisco, in 1913. During 1916 and 1917 he lived in San Anselmo and during this time he worked on the San Francisco waterfront for a tug boat service while in his leisure painted marines and views of San Francisco. An Impressionist, he is best known for his landscape paintings of Marin County and the High Sierra. His oeuvre also includes still lifes, screens, and desert landscapes of Arizona, the latter of which Cuneo painted in 1928.

In 1934 Cuneo was on e of the artists commissioned by the Public Works of Art Project to paint murals in San Francisco?s Coit Tower. (Subject of the mural is Bay Area Hills.) Cuneo taught at the summer sessions of the California School of Fine Art in 1920, 1925, 1935, and 1936. His cottage on Telegraph Hill was built on a corner of Grant and Lombard Streets; it had a panoramic view of the bay where Cuneo continued to work until his death on December 29, 1939.