LISTEN: Libby Ellis, daughter of renowned painter Ray Ellis, talks with GPB's Orlando Montoya about her father's legacy in art and the Georgia and South Carolina Lowcountry.

Ray Ellis is shown standing in front of two of his paintings and leaning against a chair in this posed photograph.

In an undated photo, artist Ray Ellis, who died 2013, poses in his Savannah gallery.

Credit: Treesa Germany / Ray Ellis Gallery

A fixture of downtown Savannah’s art scene is closing after 37 years.

The Ray Ellis Gallery says that by the end of June, its storefront on West Congress Street will shut down.

Known for his calm coastal scenes in watercolor and oil, Ellis proved popular with tourists, residents and critics as well.

He painted thousands of paintings before he died in 2013.

“My father painted all seven continents,” said his daughter, Libby Ellis. “He painted for almost 80 years of the life that he lived 92 years.”

His work was almost always impressionistic, bright and sunny. It played with the intersection of light and color in natural landscapes.

And it found its way into collections everywhere, from the Lowcountry to the White House.

Ray Ellis lived in either Savannah or Hilton Head Island from 1974 to 1991. And so it’s not uncommon to find one of his originals or prints in homes across coastal Georgia and South Carolina.

“I have always been proud to be his daughter,” Libby Ellis said. “To me, he was incredible. Then again, I'm probably biased. But I think a lot of people believe that.”

A painting depicting a calm marshy scene with a large oak tree and a fisherman is shown.

Ray Ellis was known for calm coastal scenes, such as this painting depicting a calm marsh with a large oak tree and a fisherman.

Credit: Treesa Germany / Ray Ellis Gallery

Among those who recognized his work:

He collaborated with journalist Walter Cronkite on a series of books celebrating America’s coastlines in the 1980s.

He was commissioned by President Bill Clinton and Hillary Clinton to create the official White House holiday greeting card for three years beginning in 1998.

He was awarded the Salmagundi Club’s Medal of Honor for Lifetime Achievement in the Arts in 2004.

That same year, the Telfair Museum of Art toured an exhibit of his paintings around the country.

The Ray Ellis Gallery opened in 1986.

But now, without a new supply of his work in more than 10 years, the gallery is finding it hard to justify its physical location.

A painting is show depicting three small boats on a beach with a small human figure in the background.

Ray Ellis' work was usually always impressionist, bright and sunny.

Credit: Treesa Germany / Ray Ellis Gallery

“It’s bittersweet,” Libby Ellis said. “We really did not want to do this. But we really need to.”

After the gallery closes, its sales will move exclusively online.

The artist’s work will continue to be sold at other private galleries, such as those on Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts, where he also lived for decades.