Hardback
November 5, 2019
9780819578747
English
272
135 color
9.00 Inches (US)
9.00 Inches (US)
2.7 Pounds (US)
$35.00 USD, £25.95 GBP
v2.1 Reference
Electronic book text
November 5, 2019
9780819578754
9780819578747
English
272
135 color
9.00 Inches (US)
9.00 Inches (US)
$27.99 USD, £20.50 GBP
v2.1 Reference

Forever Seeing New Beauties

The Forgotten Impressionist Mary Rogers Williams, 18571907

The story of New England's own Mary Cassatt

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 The book reproduces her unpublished artworks that capture pensive gowned women, Norwegian slopes reflected in icy waters, saw-tooth rooflines on French chateaus, and incense hazes in Italian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.

Reviews

"When historian and journalist Eve Kahn encountered a trove of letters from artist Mary Rogers Williams in 2012, there were scarce references to the late painter online, and her work had barely been exhibited over the past decades. Yet in those letters was a rich insight into the life of an artist who dedicated herself to capturing the world she witnessed, from her home in New England to vistas from her extensive European travels, in a distinctive Impressionist style."—Allison C. Miller, Art & Object

"We're more attuned than ever to the phenomenon of overlooked women artists: Each new discovery reveals the extent to which our contemporary understanding of art history has been shaped by the indispensable innovation and talent of women who were not often welcomed or properly credited by the overwhelmingly male establishment. Perhaps that's why American Impressionist Mary Rogers Williams (1857–1907), a 'revolutionary artist,' in the words of her biographer Eve Kahn, did her best to sidestep it. It's also why so few have ever heard of the artist, who was, in many ways, more than a century ahead of her time. The rediscovery of an artist like Williams goes to show the impact of a centuries-old system that has deemphasized female artists, but which has begun to shift for the better in recent decades. 'Lots of forgotten women of her time showed prolifically,' says Kahn. 'And if I went through the catalogs of the shows that Mary was in, I could point out 10 women whose stories haven't been told. But nobody's work is quite as avant-garde as Mary's was.'"—Jenna Adrian-Diaz, Vogue

Endorsements

"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
Hardback
272 Pages
$35.00 USD
9780819578754 : forever-seeing-new-beauties-kahn
Electronic book text
272 Pages
$27.99 USD

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