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Finding Edmonia Lewis and Others

M. Richardson

Writer, curator, researcher

The emphasis is on 19th-Century African American artists Edmonia Lewis, Henry Ossawa Tanner, Edward Mitchell Bannister, and Meta Warrick Fuller.

Blog entries from Finding Edmonia Lewis and Others

Bust of Christ by Edmonia Lewis, 1870

Exciting Edmonia Lewis Discovery

Posted: September 15, 2015 00:30

EXCITING EDMONIA LEWIS DISCOVERY An important discovery has been made of an1870 Bust of Christ by the Afro-Indian sculptor Edmonia Lewis (1842-1907). It was created for the Marquis of Bute, one of her earliest British patrons and is in the Bute family collection on the Isle of Bute off of Scotland.  An earlier piece by her commissioned by the Marquis, a Madonna and Child With Angels, is lost and thought to have been destroyed in a fire. A work by Lewis of this name was auctioned in London in the latter part of the 19th-century, but with no illustration and little other...

Image identified as Phillis Wheatley

Phillis Wheatley or Dido Elizabeth Belle?

Posted: May 29, 2014 12:51

Now that we have the fascinating story of Dido Belle, let’s take another look at the supposed portrait of the American slave and literary prodigy, Phillis Wheatley, in evening dress (Image 1). Published in a French review in the 1830s, long after Wheatley’s death, there is virtually no documentation to establish the subject’s identity. The historical context suggests it is far more likely a depiction of Dido Belle. (Image 2) Detail from double portrait of Elizabeth Murray and her cousin, Dido Elizabeth Belle by an unknown artist (formerly att. Johann Zoffany). Scotland...

Sculptor's Death Date Unearthed: Edmonia Lewis Died in London in 1907

Posted: January 09, 2011 14:55

Cultural historian Marilyn Richardson has solved one of the persistent mysteries of American art history: where and when did the sculptor Edmonia Lewis die? The answer is, London, England, on 17 September 1907. According to British records, Lewis, whose full name was Mary Edmonia Lewis, had been living in the Hammersmith area of London and died in the Hammersmith Borough Infirmary. She left a modest financial estate. Beginning with publications from the late 19th-century, the date of her death has been given as anywhere between 1895 and 1911 with no supporting primary evidence....

Lewis Indian Group

New Discovery: Three Indians in Battle by Edmonia Lewis

Posted: December 30, 2010 13:08

Written by Marilyn Richardson. Gabriel's Auctioneers in Norwood, Massachusetts, was surprised that almost as soon as illustrated ads for its November 29, 2010, auction appeared online and in print, the phone started ringing. An unusual number of callers had questions about a particular lot. Among the ad illustrations was a series of pictures of a dramatic piece of sculpture from an Ashland, Massachusetts, estate. The owner had little information about it, other than the possibility that his father had purchased it from an unknown source sometime in the 1950's. The 30" high marble...

 
Schwenke Auctioneers - Eastern European and Asian Decorative Arts Auction - Feb 22

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