Had Harrison Groutage been content merely to carve out a place as one of the West's foremost landscape painters, an entire generation of Utah artists would have been much the poorer for it. But, to their great fortune, Groutage coupled his genius with a brush to an uncommon ability to inspire and to nurture the talents in others.
One need only scroll down a list of current Utah artists to understand just how many identify the Cache County native as a mentor. To these, and to hundreds more who took his classes at Utah State University over three decades, Groutage was a larger-than-life model for what an artist, and a teacher, should be: smart, passionate, caring, committed, witty, and just plain likable.
At his death Tuesday at 87, Groutage was numbered among an exceptionally gifted generation of Utah-educated landscape artists who flourished in the mid-to-late 20th-century, among them LeConte Stewart, George Dibble, Gaell Lindstrom, Ed Maryon, Alvin Gittins and V. Douglas Snow.