Thomas King Baker (1911 - 1972) - Induction Center

Thomas King Baker was an insurance underwriter by day, self-taught, basement artist by night. He and his wife, Mila Hoover, were middle-class socialites and enjoyed the opera, galleries, museums and a vibrant nightlife. King was friendly with local artists and was a collector. Among friends and family, his art-making was a poorly kept secret—they knew of his passion but were unaware of the extent of King’s breadth and body of work. King never exhibited while he was alive.

King died from the effects of alcoholism in 1972.

In 1991, Thomas McCormick, an art dealer, stumbled upon a few interesting paintings that he could not immediately identify. After some detective work, McCormick figured out that the works were by Baker. McCormick contacted Baker’s wife Mila, who was still alive and cataloged a large cache of works that Mila had kept together.

This work illustrates King's gifted use of line, color and his use of calendar fragments. King was not ignorant of art history and contemporary art and the use of block numbers on, “Induction Center,” is likely a nod to Jasper Johns.

King’s paintings, illustrations, and sketchbooks were exhibited at the Albrecht-Kemper Museum in 1997.

In 2007, the bulk of King’s estate was donated to Intuit: The Center for Intuitive and Outsider Art in Chicago.

Exhibited: Albrecht-Kemper Museum of Art, MO, 1997

Illustrated and discussed in: Oh For Pity’s Sake, We’ve Already Seen This Opera: The Art of Thomas King Baker; p. 37


Condition: Excellent. Archivally mounted and framed with UV glass.

Date: Circa: 1965
Origin American
Artist/Maker Thomas King Baker (1911 - 1972)
Measurements 13 1/4"(h) x 9" (w) (sight) / 25" (h) x 21" (w) (framed)
Inventory View Dealer's Inventory
Price SOLD
Contact Steve Powers, 917-518-0809 or

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