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Professor of Art, Department of Art

Hillsdale College

born 1949, Lansing, Michigan



Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Art, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania                     1976

Post-graduate coursework in painting

The University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan                                       1973-1976

Master of Fine Arts degree, cum laude, concentration: painting

Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan                                    1967-1971

Bachelor of Fine Arts degree, magna cum laude, concentration: painting


Hillsdale College, Hillsdale, Michigan                                                      1978-present 

Professor of Art,

Duties:  Courses in oil painting, watercolor, figure drawing

Basic drawing, History of Italian Renaissance Art,

History of American Art, managed art exhibit series

Seminar courses in egg tempera painting, woodcut

Art Department Chair (1978-2013)


University of Michigan School of Art, Ann Arbor, Michigan                       2002-2003

Adjunct Assistant Professor of Art                                                                 


University of Michigan, Program in Florence, Italy                                               1985

Guest Associate Professor of Art

Initiated first studio art course (drawing) in program curriculum


Kendall College of Art and Design, Grand Rapids, MI                                     1972-3       

Instructor:  Foundation Program


Butler Institute of American Art, Youngstown, Ohio                                            2016

80th Mid-year National Juried Competition      

Honorable Mention


Portrait Society of America Members Only Competition                                   2013

Honorable Mention: Non-commissioned portrait          


Portrait Society of America Members Only Competition                                  2012

Honorable Mentions: Non-commissioned portrait and Landscape  


Sage Center for the Arts, Hillsdale College, Hillsdale, Michigan                          2012

“Sightings”  solo exhibition                   


Portrait Society of America Members Only Competition                                   2011

Honorable Mention: Self-portrait                      


Portrait Society of America Members Only Competition                                  2009

First Place: Watercolor


Portrait Society of America Members Only Competition                                  2008

Honorable Mention: Children’s Portrait                                                       


Sage Center for the Arts, Hillsdale College, Hillsdale, Michigan                          2008

“Light Watchman: Recent Paintings by Sam Knecht”


Ella Sharp Museum of Art and History, Jackson, Michigan                                2008

Solo exhibition                                                                                       


20 North Gallery, Toledo, Ohio                                                                              2007

Solo exhibition                                                                                       


Butler Institute of American Art, Youngstown, OH                                              2006

70th Mid-year National Juried Competition


Palette and Chisel Academy of Fine Art, Chicago, IL                                         2006

“Sam Knecht: Realist Painter”


Indiana University at South Bend                                                                        2005

“Three Realists: Sam Knecht, Carl J. Samson, Jeff Gandert”


Hillsdale College, Hillsdale, MI                                                                              2004

“America Seen: Character in the American People and Landscape”

(national invitational exhibit produced and curated by Knecht)


American Society of Portrait Artists Foundation                                               2001

International Portrait Competition, Art Students League

Award of Special Recognition


American Society of Portrait Artists Foundation                                               2000

International Portrait Competition, National Academy of Design

Honorable Mention Award


The Legacy Lives, LeverHouse Gallery, New York City                                        1996

Chairman of selection jury/participating artist


Michigan Water Color Society, statewide juried annual                                       1992

Michigan Arts Foundation Award for Best of Show                                     


Grand Central Galleries, New York City                                                                1992

Romantic Realism: Visions of Values                                                                                               



The Allan P. Kirby, Jr. Center for Constitutional
Studies and Citizenship, 
Washington, D.C.

(5 x 10’ oil mural depicting the Signing of the American Constitution)


Michigan Supreme Court, Lansing, Michigan

(portrait of Michigan Supreme Court Chief Justice Thomas G. Kavanagh)


Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan

(portrait of President Emeritus Peter McPherson)


Thomas M. Cooley Law School, Lansing, Michigan

(four past academic deans of the law school)


Ohio Wesleyan University, Delaware, Ohio

(portrait of President Emeritus Thomas Courtice)


U. S. Federal District Court for the Northwest Ohio District, Toledo, OH

(portrait of Justice David Katz)


The Hylant Group (wealth management firm), Toledo, Ohio

(portrait of Pat Hylant, Jr. CEO)



Portrait Society of America, patron member

Michigan Water Color Society



Journal of the Portrait Society of America: Issue no. 71                                   2016

“Still Lovely after All These Years” article reports re-emergence
to public view of “Ernesta” and “Ernesta’s Shoes” by Cecilia Beaux. 


American Artist Studios 20 magazine                                              September, 2010

6-page article on Knecht’s home art studio
authored by editor Steve Doherty


International Artist magazine                                                          spring issue, 2010

Reproduction of Knecht’s painting, “The Woodcutter”
awarded First Place Watercolor: 2009 Portrait Society
of America Members Only Competition


“The Paintings and Drawings of Anthony Ryder”                                              2006

Exhibit Catalogue Essay.  Hillsdale College Press 


“America Seen: Character in the American People and Landscape”              2004

Catalogue for national invitational exhibit of oil paintings
curated by Knecht for Hillsdale College. Hillsdale College Press


Ann Arbor Observer magazine: Cover illustrations, full color/full page. 

            June, 2000,    April 2001,   March 2002


“The Practice of Egg Tempera Painting”  Art Ideas magazine,                        1999

The journal of American Renaissance for the Twenty-first
Century Foundation, New York City, Vol. Six- 2&3,


“Portraits and Propaganda”, 16 page illustrated article in                                   1990

“Reflections on the French Revolution:  A Hillsdale Symposium”

Regnery Gateway


“Painting with Egg Tempera” American Artist magazine                November, 1981


84 Union Street

Hillsdale, Michigan  49242


tel:  517.439.0881

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