Biography

Roger Bansemer  has worked his entire adult life as an author and artist. Presently he and Sarah Bansemer live and work in St. Augustine, Florida, as independent film makers producing their nationally televised series “Painting and Travel with Roger and Sarah Bansemer” for Public Television. Currently they have completed 143 half hour programs reaching 91% of the country in 168 markets. In the past year “Painting and Travel” has been aired over 32,000 times on PBS stations and the Create Channel in the past year.

Season 9 Episode 4
Filmed in St Augustine, FL

Roger has been actively involved in advocating for the arts and supporting fellow artists since the early 1970’s and was selected as Clearwater Florida’s first artist in residence. At his residence in Clearwater, Roger held an annual open studio and organized a drawing group that met regularly for many years. Roger continues to share his passion for creating and is able to offer art instruction and encouragement to millions of viewers through the series which began in 2011.

Viewers say…

I regard your painting shows which I see on PBS as quite instructive and enjoyable.  Your program format is both instructional and informative. Sarah presents excellent background depth and adds dimension to the production. I really appreciate your insightful approach to selection and explanation of your vision and techniques.  I look forward to each episode.  Thank you for doing this production on PBS.

- Charles Wilhelm

This is such a well done program: so beautiful, informative and inspiring. I don’t know anything about painting but it makes me feel like I’d like to start. It made me feel as though I were on the painting trip with you and your family. Yet at the same time it was so relaxed and personal. It was also quite full of instruction, from paint choices to procedures to many philosophical aspects of rendering a final work.

- Maria Chapin, MA St. Petersburg College

Roger was born on July 25, 1948 and grew up in Clearwater, Florida where at an early age he clearly showed his artistic ability and future direction. Roger attended the Ringling School of Art and Design in Sarasota, Florida and after graduation served in the US Navy finding a position as Illustrator/Draftsman for the “Cruiser-Destroyerman” magazine sketching and writing his way through numerous countries.

As a painter, Bansemer is renowned for his evocative and captivating figurative works depicting landscapes, shorebirds, wildlife, beachscapes and nautical themes on canvas and large-scale murals. With a keen eye for detail and a deep appreciation for nature, Bansemer’s artworks and books have garnered widespread acclaim. After two life changing events in the mid 1970s Roger explored the fragility and spirituality of human existence through his abstract period producing over 900 canvases which sold from Palm Beach to New York City.

In the year 2000 and again in 2005 Roger had the opportunity to join a scientific expedition and view the Titanic wreck site from the Russian submersible Mir resulting in the book “Journey to Titanic” and several small original paintings were completed while hovering over the bow of Titanic conveying the historic scene.

Here’s what James Cameron, academy award winning director of the movie Titanic says:

“Roger’s images and words will allow the readers to feel as if they have been on the voyage themselves, spent time with these people, and made the ultimate deep dive to the grave of the great liner herself. No one who sees the wreck of Titanic leaves that place unchanged, and this book conveys that experience beautifully.”

Roger’s abiding love for Southern landscapes came to fruition with hundreds of paintings and a narrative called “Southern Shores.”

CBS News Anchor, journalist, Walter Cronkite says:

“…with his unique artistic and reportorial talent,  Bansemer gives us a nostalgic, sometimes humorous, occasionally tart tour of [nature’s] wonders. His brush and his pen capture not only its beauty, but its fragility  in the hands of man.”

After taking a tethered balloon ride once, Roger fell in love with the sport and became a pilot and has logged over 700 hours as a hot-air balloonist. This adventurous and colorful sport inspired the book, “The Art of Hot-Air Ballooning.” It has been reviewed by Smithsonian Magazine and American Artist Magazine. Bansemer was invited to fly in France with fellow balloonist Malcolm Forbes who wrote in Forbes Magazine, “This is the most beautiful, colorful, imaginative, artful depiction of the sport I’ve seen.”

James Rosenquist, pop artist and friend says:

“Roger Bansemer has created a book of many unusual stories. It is beautiful to see but is much more unusual to feel the color, the atmosphere, but especially the quiet. Roger’s book is not nearly a picture of balloons but a book woven with a thread of human incidents and humor which makes it more a study of human behavior associated with ballooning.”

In the 1990s, Author James A. Michener and Bansemer began a friendship and travelled to the Smoky Mountains to photograph and experience the landscape. Roger captured the beauty of the Smokys in his “Mountains in the Mist” book with Michener’s introduction and foreword.

“A stunning personal celebration of one of the most beautiful regions of the United States, Mountains in the Mist reflects the glories of the Great Smokys – its people, its wildlife and flora. Under his tutelage I saw things that I had not noticed closely because I realized that with his artist’s eye he could see things I didn’t.”
—James A. Michener

Studying the history of Southeastern lighthouses over the years, Roger decided to visit, paint, and describe those 30 remaining in Florida as well as lighthouses in North and South Carolina and Georgia completing two books.

“Hands down, it is the most beautiful book we have ever seen on the subject of lighthouses. It is a visual feast.”

—The Keeper’s Log, The Official Journal of the U.S. Lighthouse Society

Roger Bansemer’s prolific life’s work has been characterized by an endless desire to create and share his interest in the human condition and his fascination with the natural world around him. Through his paintings, books and television presence he continues to inspire and captivate audiences leaving an indelible mark on the art world.