Triumphant Lives Three: American Women Artists (1795-1950) at Hawthorne Fine Art

  • NEW YORK, New York
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  • April 23, 2022

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Rhoda Holmes Nicholls (1854-1930) Lady in the Woods. Oil on canvas, 20 x 16 inches. Signed lower right.
Hawthorne Fine Art

Hawthorne Fine Art is pleased to present Triumphant Lives Three: American Women Artists (1795-1950). This is the third survey in a series that began in 2019 which presents over 100 works for sale in the gallery’s inventory by both prominent and lesser-known but equally talented women artists and includes landscapes, still-lifes, and portraits. The accompanying catalogue further highlights the wide-ranging talent and achievements of American women artists.

Among the work offered is From My Window, Concarneau by Edith V. Cockcroft (1881-1962). A Brooklyn native, Cockcroft studied in Paris under Henri Matisse and befriended artists such as Pierre Renoir and Paul Gauguin. Cockcroft’s painting depicts the French port city of Concarneau, a notable 19th century artist colony, blanketed in snow while figures in traditional Breton dress huddle beside market stalls. The painting was exhibited at the Pennsylvania Academy’s 105th annual exhibition in 1910.

In Arno River, Florence, Anna Mary Richards Brewster (1870-1952) captures the Arno River as it makes its way past the Italian city of Florence. Painted en plein air from a high vantage point Brewster’s sweeping city view includes historic landmarks such as the Ponte Vecchio and the Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore. The daughter of seascapist William Trost Richards and artist Anna Matlock Richards, Brewster exhibited at the National Academy of Design at just 14 years of age.

Closer to home, female Hudson River School artist Laura Woodward (1834-1926) captures the vast American landscape in Camel’s Hump, Vermont, 1877. Figures picking flowers in the foreground are diminutive in scale amid a large swath of farmland and Vermont’s Green Mountains. In Autumn 1878, a more intimate work, Woodward depicts a small cascade of water surrounded by the warm hues of fall foliage. The work was executed during Woodward’s two-month sketching excursion in Northeast Pennsylvania’s Blooming Grove Park.

Edith V. Cockcroft (1881-1962) From My Window, Concarneau. Oil on canvas, 30 x 40 inches. Signed lower right.
Hawthorne Fine Art

Three young ladies share a picnic in Woodland Landscape by Mary Josephine Walters (1837-1883). Wearing colorful frocks, the ladies sit beside a riverbank near a forest opening created by a dense canopy of arched trees and intertwining branches. A favorite student of Asher B. Durand, Walters exhibited with the Ladies’ Art Association, the National Academy of Design, and the Young Men’s Christian Association.

Rhoda Holmes Nicholls (1854-1930) Lady in the Woods depicts a solitary woman in a forest setting. Dressed in red with hand over heart the woman gazes out at the scene before her. Nicholl’s marriage to the artist Burr Nicholls ended in divorce when in 1897 her work was accepted into the Paris salon and the work of her husband was not.

Anna Mary Richards Brewster (1870-1952) Arno River, Florence. Oil on canvas, 9 x 16 inches. Signed lower left. Original Newcomb Macklin frame.
Hawthorne Fine Art

In Landscape at Cragsmoor, Helen Maria Turner (1858-1958) depicts figures on a farm while the lush rolling hills of the Shawangunk Ridge spread out in the distance. An active member of the Cragsmoor Art Colony, Turner returned to the region each summer for more than thirty years. In another work, Turner captures the rosy glow of youth in Portrait of Ann Spencer. Raised in New York City’s Washington Square, Spencer counted Lena Glackens, the daughter of American Ashcan painter William J. Glackens as a close friend. Spencer’s parents commissioned the portrait when she was twelve years old, and the experience left a lasting impression. Spencer went on to become an artist in her own right.

Little-known today, Sarah Rhodes Macknight flourished in New York City between 1877 and 1886 exhibiting with the Brooklyn Art Association, the National Academy, the American Watercolor Society, and the Milwaukee Exposition Association. Her painting entitled Lois, The Witch of Salem, ca. 1881 was inspired by Elizabeth Gaskell’s (1810-1865) short story Lois the Witch. Macknight depicts the story’s protagonist accused of witchcraft in the dark of night under a waxing crescent moon. The painting was exhibited at the 56th Annual Exhibition at the National Academy in 1881.

Susan Waters (1823-1900) depicts a young woman dressed in a black mourning dress with lace collar in her portrait of Catherine Quackenbush Slade, 1844. A posthumous portrait, Slade holds open a book revealing an image of a pale pink rose in full bloom with buds that have not yet opened indicating she may have died during childbirth. Through a window beside her life continues in a tree lined landscape beneath blue skies.

Hawthorne Fine Art is a Manhattan based fine art gallery specializing in 19th and early 20th century American painting. To access the Triumphant Lives Three catalogue, please visit our website and click to download a digital copy:  

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