October 22, 2019
9.00 Inches (US)
9.00 Inches (US)
$35.00 USD, £27.50 GBP
v2.1 Reference

Forever Seeing New Beauties

The Forgotten Impressionist Mary Rogers Williams, 18571907

Revolutionary artist Mary Rogers Williams (1857—1907), a baker's daughter from Hartford, Connecticut, biked and hiked from the Arctic Circle to Naples, exhibited from Paris to Indianapolis, trained at the Art Students League, chafed against art world rules that favored men, wrote thousands of pages about her travels and work, taught at Smith College for nearly two decades, but sadly ended up almost totally obscure. The book reproduces her unpublished artworks that capture pensive gowned women, Norwegian slopes reflected in icy waters, saw-tooth rooflines on French chateaus, and incense hazes in Italian chapels, and it offers a vivid portrayal of an adventurer, defying her era's expectations.

About the Author

EVE M. KAHN is an independent scholar specializing in art and architectural history, design and preservation, and was weekly Antiques columnist at The New York Times, 2008—2016. She contributes regularly to the Times, The Magazine Antiques, Apollo, and Atlas Obscura.


"Eve Kahn evocatively reconstructs Impressionist painter Mary Rogers Williams' life in a jaunty style fitting her upbeat, globe-trekking, paintbrush-wielding subject. A rare woman's perspective on 19th century cosmopolitan life, it's a must-read."—Katherine Manthorne, art historian, CUNY Graduate Center

"From a forgotten box of letters Eve Kahn meticulously stiches together the life, travels, work, opinions, humor and travails of Mary Rogers Williams. Kahn's zealous detective work begs the question, how many other women, erased to history, await discovery?"—Marcia Ely, Executive Vice President, Brooklyn Historical Society

"Two decades before Virginia Woolf's "A Room of One's Own," Mary Rogers Williams wrestled with the indignities of life as a professional woman artist. Subject to the sexism of her age, she nonetheless honed an original approach to her art, building a life around her passion for travel, friends, her sisters, and her refusal to forfeit her independent views. Eve Kahn immerses us in Williams's pictures and thoughts, at long last bringing this vivid woman the attention she deserves."—Amy Kurtz Lansing, Curator, Florence Griswold Museum

"Eve Kahn has created a vivid portrait of an artist who was too self-effacing to paint one of herself. Grounded in New England pastoralism, European decadence, art salon politicking and misogynistic backstabbing, the story of Mary Rogers Williams is one of significant toughness."—Julie Lasky, journalist, author, and critic

9780819578747 : forever-seeing-new-beauties-kahn
October 22, 2019
$35.00 USD

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