Russell Cheney (1881-1945) was an American painter. He graduated from
Yale, where he was a member of the Skull and Bonessecret society.
Cheney studied painting at the
Art Students League of New Yorkand was its acting president in 1909-10. He held his first New York exhibition in Babcock Galleries 1922. His portrait of Professor Candle hung in the Paris Salonin 1909 and his work has been represented in many museums including the Boston Museum of Fine Artsand the San Francisco Museum of Art. Cheney illustrated F. O. Matthiessen's book "Sarah Orne Jewett" (1929), on the writer of the same name. A catalogue of Cheney's paintings was published in 1922. Cheney was a member of the Connecticut Academy of Arts and Sciences, Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center, and San Francisco Art Society.
He was the long time partner and lover of author
F. O. Matthiessen, who was also a Yale graduate and became a member of Skull & Bones in 1923. Matthiessen was twenty years Russell's junior.
Russell's death was due to mesenteric thrombosis. He was buried in East Cemetery in Manchester, Connecticut. He was survived by Matthiessen, two sisters, Ednah Cheney Underhill of Santa Barbara, Calif and Mrs. Halstead Dorey of Boerne, Texas. He had three brothers Knight Dexter Cheney, Philip Cheney, and Thomas Langdon Cheney, who were also members of
Skull & Bones.
*cite book|title=Russell Cheney, 1881-1945: a record of his work|author=Russell Cheney, Francis Otto Matthiessen|year=1947|publisher=Oxford University Press OCLC|493016
*cite book|title=Rat & the Devil: Journal Letters of F.O. Matthiessen and Russell Cheney|author=Louis Hyde, ed.|year=1978|publisher=Alyson Publlications
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