Royce H. Vaughn
Starting in 1987, San Francisco fine artist Royce H. Vaughn and four friends incorporated The California Collectors’ Series, producing a series of note cards that combine a love of art with a love of California. Currently, the collection includes 26 scenes of California, Italy and Germany as well as a reproduction of “We Shall Overcome,” a tribute to leaders in the fight for human rights.
About the Artist
Throughout his life, Vaughn has tried to balance commitment to the small business community and vocational training for students in the arts with his ability to see the world through the cobalt blue and alizarin crimson of his artist’s palette.
“Art is an experience in honesty,” he says of his watercolors. “How do you recapture the special feeling that made you want to remember this place?”
Vaughn’s background is in art history, theology and Spanish from Princeton, the University of California at Los Angeles, San Francisco State University and the San Francisco Art Institute. His work is in the permanent collection of the Oakland Museum and has been purchased by the San Francisco Art Commission as well as many individual collectors. It is included in books, publications, monographs and indexes from the Boston Library, the University of Southern Alabama and Indiana University.
One-man and group shows include exhibits at the home of Lyle Richardson, Nordstrom, I. Magnin, Macy’s, Bank of America, Home Federal Savings, Mechanics Bank, Gilbert Gallery, Kerwin Gallery, Union Court, Union Street Gallery, Sunshine Gallery, the Jones Wesleyan Methodist Church, African American Historical and Cultural Society, the Beaux Arts Festival honoring sponsors of the Afro-American wing of the San Francisco Public Library and the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago. In recent years, his cards have been available at Kaiser Hospital gift stores and the San Francisco Symphony.
His painting, "Blue Angels Over San Francisco," and blank note cards illustrated with the art work were featured during Fleet Week at the Marines' Memorial Building in San Francisco.
Vaughn served as Community Resources Director for the Oakland Museum in 1982 and served with William Kent III and Carolyn Ahmanson on the panel on grants and programs for the California State Art Commission.
As an artist, Vaughn shares the colors, mood and circumstance which prompted him to paint each scene. As a community innovator, he has reached out specifically to young people to prepare them for vocations in the arts.
In the 1960s -- an era when corporations were just beginning to sponsor and give jobs to neighborhood organizations -- he was founder and Executive Director of the Arts and Business Learning Experiences (ABLE). Through a major grant from the Ford Foundation matched by local grants, he raised $500,000 to fund the program for ten years. The Economic Opportunity Commission provided student stipends and materials.
Recognizing the need to improve communications between disparate segments of the community and to help strengthen the voice of small business owners in the Oceanview Merced Ingleside neighborhood, he founded and for seven years served as chair of the OMI Business League (OMIBL).
In this capacity, he became vice president of the San Francisco Council of District Merchants and recipient of awards for his service.
During this time, Vaughn helped raise over $40,000 for the new Oceanview Library at 345 Randolph and served on its steering committee. The Opportunity Knocks pre-vocational program reached out to students in a juvenile truancy program.
He designed and was principal fundraiser for the mural painted on the wall of the PG&E building at Ocean and Junipero Serra which recognizes the diversity and commitment of long-time residents to strengthening the community. Working with City College and other community groups, he sought to implement a strategic plan for the OMI, complete with membership parking and market analysis.
In 1998 he spearheaded a parade and celebration for OMI Founders Day and created a first-of-its-kind souvenir neighborhood history.