Graeme Baxter visited the Naples, Fla., club to unveil his painting of the 18th hole. In addition to being commissioned for a portrait of Prince William and Prince Harry, Baxter is also the official artist of several of golf’s major events.
As the Ryder Cup’s official painter for 27 years and one who was also recently commissioned to paint Prince William and Prince Harry, acclaimed artist Graeme Baxter stopped by Eagle Creek Golf & Country Club in Naples, Fla. on January 25 to unveil his latest work: a rendering of the club’s famous finishing Hole #18.
“This is a huge acknowledgement for the city of Naples and the Florida golf industry, to have an internationally acclaimed painter document a local course,” stated Laura Hill, Eagle Creek’s Marketing Director.
In addition to royalty, Graeme’s resume consists of several of the world’s top golfers and a status as the official artist of the PGA Championship, PGA Tour of Europe, Open Championship, Presidents Cup, Ryder Cup and World American Express Championship. He has also been the official painter for Wimbledon tennis and recently painted horse racing’s 2018 Triple Crown winner, Justify, after previously painting 2015 Triple Crown winner American Pharaoh.
On January 25, Baxter unveiled his rendering of Eagle Creek’s #18 to a crowd of members and guests, culminating a process he started in the fall of 2018.
“Being selected by Graeme Baxter as one the eight exclusive golf courses he chose to paint this year has been such an honor,” said Don Madalinski, Eagle Creek’s General Manager.
A self-professed “golf historian,” Baxter enjoys capturing moments on the course for future generations to come. “My goal is to record golf history through my paintings,” he said.
And in Naples, renovations on courses are more common than uncommon, which makes Baxter’s historic documentation even more valuable. Eagle Creek has a 30-plus year legacy with second generations now becoming members, which for courses in Naples is rare.
“Second-generation members have pre-purchased the Eagle Creek painting, based on the family memories they have shared on the course and Mr. Baxter’s world-renowned legacy,” said Hill.
When it comes to Baxter’s painting approach, he keeps it simple. “I like to be accurate but not photographically accurate,” he said. “I am looking to find the heart of a golf course, grasp the many details and colors, and capture its key characteristics and natural feel.”
Eagle Creek Golf & Country Club is a small, private gated community centrally located midway between Naples & Marco Island, on 300 wooded acres of cypress, pine and palm trees. The club was hit hard when it was caught in the eye of Hurricane Irma in September 2017, losing over 2,000 trees on the property.
But as documented in C&RB’s January 2018 cover story, “Lessons from a Challenging Year,” Eagle Creek’s staff quickly and efficiently took steps needed to resume operations and complete a golf course renovation that had been scheduled for a reopening just a month before Irma came ashore.
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