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Margaret Samu

(b Winchester, OH, Nov 21, 1874; d Osterville, MA, March 10, 1954).

American sculptor. Longman was the first American woman of her generation to establish a career in large-scale public sculpture and the first woman sculptor to become a full member of the National Academy of Design (1919). Longman studied at the Art Institute of Chicago as a teenager, then began modeling clay in 1896 while at Olivet College in Michigan. In 1898 she enrolled full-time at the Art Institute of Chicago. Training with Lorado Taft, she completed the four-year program in two years. After moving to New York City she became a studio assistant to Daniel Chester French in 1901. At his encouragement she opened her own studio, where she worked in her free time. After she left French’s studio in 1906, they remained close friends and colleagues.

Longman’s first public commission was Victory (gilded staff, 1903), created for the 1904 St Louis World’s Fair. This 7.6-m tall gilded figure of a lithe male athlete crowned the fair’s central building, while the plaster model for the piece won a silver medal for sculpture (bronze casts ...


Anne K. Swartz

(b Oklahoma City, OK, 1946).

American painter and printmaker. MacConnel grew up in Oklahoma City, OK, and traveled frequently, especially to Mexico. He received a BA with honors in visual art at the University of California at San Diego, La Jolla (UCSD). He was a California State Scholar in 1970. MacConnel received an MFA with honors from UCSD. While a graduate student, he met visiting critic and art historian Amy Goldin, a visiting professor. He also met Robert Kushner, who was also a student in Goldin’s class and who also befriended Goldin. Goldin taught them in a seminar called “The Art Box,” where she encouraged the students to look beyond definitions of the current art world. She wanted the students to consider visual culture—everything from quilts to folk art—as related to contemporary art. Decoration was one of the things she encouraged MacConnel to examine. Decorations was his first solo show in 1971 at UCSD where he showed work inspired by world decoration. In his work, he combined and juxtaposed unexpected and often unorthodox images and patterns. His work had strong reminiscences in the bold coloring and strong patterning of such artists as Henri Matisse, who also considered non-Western source material. He became one of the founding artists of the ...


Julia Robinson

(b Kaunas, Lithuania, Nov 8, 1931; d Boston, MA, May 9, 1978).

American artist, architect and designer. Maciunias is best known as the key impresario of Fluxus, the international group of artists, composers, poets and performers who came together in 1962. Maciunas chose the name “Fluxus” to galvanize the radical activities of this group, and to define a sense of constant, dynamic, agitation and thus a politics for the work. Arriving in the USA in 1948, he studied graphic design at New York’s Cooper Union, architecture at the Carnegie Institute of Technology in Pittsburgh, PA, and art history at New York University’s Institute of Fine Arts. At this time he developed vast, genealogical art history charts, which he called “Learning Machines.” He later used this model to situate Fluxus within the genealogy of 20th century avant-gardes.

A 1960 class in Electronic Music with Richard Maxfield at the New School for Social Research introduced Maciunas to the New York avant-garde. In 1961 he opened the AG Gallery on Madison Avenue, New York, asking ...


Deborah A. Middleton

American architectural partnership based in Atlanta, GA, formed by Mack Scogin (b Atlanta, GA, 13 Nov 1943) and Merrill Elam (b Nashville, TN, 28 June 1943). Mack Scogin Merrill Elam is an innovative architectural practice whose modern contemporary designs reflect concerns for the bounding of spatial experience. The firm was established in Atlanta, GA, originally as Scogin and Parker (1984); it then became Scogin Elam and Bray (1984–2000), finally growing to Mack Scogin Merrill Elam Architects, a mid-sized firm of 30 persons, in 2000.

Elam received her BA Arch in 1971 from the Georgia Institute of Technology, studying during the height of Paul M. Heffernan’s directorship and Bauhaus influence there. She received her MBA from Georgia State University in 1982. Scogin received his BA Arch in 1966 and worked with Heery and Heery as Senior Architect advancing to Vice President (1978...


Robin Karson

(b Reading, MA, Nov 6, 1860; d Waltham, MA, Feb 5, 1938).

American landscape architect and planner. Manning spent his childhood in the rural countryside north of Boston and from an early age assisted in the nursery founded by his well-known father Jacob, who also took him on plant-collecting excursions in the wild. In time Manning acquired wide knowledge of both native and exotic plants, and he also became interested in landscape design, advertising his services through his father’s nursery. In 1888 he left the family business and took a position as planting supervisor in the Brookline, MA, office of Olmsted, Olmsted & Eliot.

Working alongside Frederick Law Olmsted, John Charles Olmsted and Charles Eliot, Manning learned to apply his vast horticultural repertory to a Romantic style of landscape design that combined aspects of the British Picturesque with an American appreciation for bold scenic effects and attention to the genius loci. He also learned the rudiments of sophisticated data-gathering techniques developed by Eliot during work on the Boston park system. Manning’s most important projects with the Olmsted firm included the Boston parks, the installation of plants at the Chicago World’s Columbian Exposition (...


Sascha Scott

(b Vlachovo Březí, Bohemia [Czech Republic], Nov 7, 1890; d Bronx, New York, June 24, 1972).

American painter and printmaker of Czech birth. Matulka was raised in South Bohemia (now the Czech Republic) and began his artistic training in Prague in 1905, which was interrupted when he immigrated to the USA with his parents in 1907. They settled in the Bronx, and soon after he enrolled in the National Academy of Design. He completed his training in 1917, at which time he was awarded the National Academy of Design’s Joseph Pulitzer Traveling Scholarship, which came with a $1500 prize. Unable to travel abroad due to complications in securing a passport, he traveled instead to New Mexico, Arizona and Florida between 1917 and 1918. In 1918, he married Ludmila Jirouskova, a fellow Bohemian immigrant. From 1917 through 1919 was a period of frequent travel and artistic experimentation for Matulka. Around this time he adopted a Cubist-inspired style, apparent in works such as Cubist Nudes (1916–19; Lincoln, U. NE, Sheldon Mem. A.G.) and ...


W. Douglass Paschall


(b Norristown, PA, July 5, 1864; d Philadelphia, PA, Nov 20, 1942).

American painter, illustrator and teacher. Born in Norristown, near Philadelphia, McCarter enrolled at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts in 1879, at the age of 15. Of the several hundred students who moved through the classes of Thomas Eakins at the Pennsylvania Academy, none would move as far, stylistically and temperamentally, from their teacher as McCarter. Though later he would regard the five years he studied there as “years lost,” his training was sufficient to earn him a post drawing imagery for the Philadelphia Press.

In 1887 McCarter sailed to Europe for further studies under Léon Bonnat and Pierre Puvis de Chavannes and an apprenticeship to Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec in the medium of lithography. On his return to the United States, McCarter, grounded in the international style of graphic arts, settled in New York to a prosperous career and continued transatlantic travels as an illustrator for McClure’s, Harper’s, Century...


G. Lola Worthington

(b Nice, CA, Jan 12, 1907; d May 31, 1993).

Native-American (Long Valley Cache Creek Pomo) basket weaver. Her father, Yanta Boone, was Potter Valley Pomo and her mother, Daisy Hansen, was Losel Cache Creek Pomo, and McKay was raised by her maternal grandmother, Sarah Taylor. Described as an unusually quiet and sickly child, she frequently talked and screamed during her sleep. Hearing her mumble, Sarah, understood Mabel was a Dreamer, an individual contacted by a Spirit. As a medium between the spiritual and the human world, the Spirit directed her to become a healer in her Pomo community and instructed her in techniques of healing and basket weaving. Her baskets represent a tangible object communicated by the Spirit for medicinal treatments.

Many consider her the last Dreamer of the Pomo people and also a prodigy at basket making. Never “taught” to weave a basket, she asserted the Spirit strictly instructed her when she slept to create baskets. She considered her baskets as only for healing and not beautiful or attractive objects. Nevertheless, the graceful detail of her baskets brought her worldwide attention. Her baskets are collected and exhibited abroad and in the United States in museum collections....


G. Lola Worthington

(b Santa Clara Pueblo, NM, 1938).

Native American (Santa Clara Pueblo) potter. Her father Camilio Sunflower Tafoya, mother Agapita and aunt Margaret Tafoya revived ancestral pottery techniques characteristic of Mimbres pottery. Furthermore, they fabricated superior black and brick red carved-incised pottery forms. A member of the renowned Tafoya family, she, along with her father and brother, Joseph LoneWolf, further revived and expanded pottery forms and techniques in Santa Clara.

Surrounded by celebrated and respected potters, she began making traditional pottery. In the late 1960s, along with her brother Joseph, she began etching designs directly onto the clay using a Sgraffito method. Grace’s work, elegant and aesthetically ingenious, transforms pottery into phenomenal and celebrated showpieces.

Many steps are involved in creating her wares from locally obtained clay. Innovative combined techniques of polished polychrome clay with incised sgraffito produce spectacular creative objects. Coil built, dried, hand polished to a smooth finish with stone or painted with clay slips, she will often add additional color to the body. The contrast of matte clay against polished surface juxtaposes intricately layered designs with negative spaces. After the slip completely dries, she carves fine-line storytelling illustrations into the greenware clay. Polished steel cutting tools produce the very precise and painstaking ...


Mark Alan Hewitt

(b Pelotas, Brazil, Nov 17, 1894; d Santa Fe, NM, Aug 4, 1983).

American architect and preservationist. One of America’s pioneering regionalist architects, Meem was associated with the city of Santa Fe, NM, for most of his life. He was born to Episcopalian missionary parents, J. G. Meem III and Elsa Krishke, in Pelotas, Brazil. Upon leaving the Army in 1919, Meem decided to enter the banking business and was assigned to a branch of the National City Bank of New York in Rio de Janiero because of his fluency in Portuguese. During his several months in Brazil he contracted tuberculosis and was sent to the Sunmount Sanatorium near Santa Fe to follow the common cure of rest, mountain air and a special diet.

Meem’s immediate attraction to the traditional culture and landscape of New Mexico reawakened a childhood interest in architecture, and this was further cultivated by a friendship with another patient at Sunmount, Carlos Vierra (1876–1937). An artist and painter of Portuguese descent, Vierra joined the sanatorium’s director, Dr. Frank Mera, in a group that documented and studied the traditional adobe architecture of the Southwest. The group, which also included archaeologists, architects and business leaders, saved the old Palace of the Governors in Santa Fe from demolition in ...


Nancy E. Green

(b Doylestown, PA, June 24, 1856; d Doylestown, March 9, 1930).

American archaeologist, ethnologist and decorative tile designer and manufacturer. Mercer grew up in a privileged Philadelphia family, and at a young age he began his lifelong love of travel, which would take him eventually throughout Europe, the Middle East and Mexico. These travels would later influence his tile designs for the Moravian Pottery and Tile Works. From 1875 to 1879 he attended Harvard University, studying with George Herbert Palmer, Henry Cabot Lodge and Charles Eliot Norton, the latter having a defining influence on the development of his aesthetic sense. From 1880 to 1881 he read law, first with his uncle Peter McCall and then with the firm of Fraley and Hollingsworth, both in Philadelphia, though he never received his law degree. Thereafter, he returned to Europe, becoming interested in archaeology and beginning his lifelong passion for collecting the minutiae and mundane objects of everyday life, becoming one of the first scholars to examine history through a material culture lens....


Donna Stein

(b Los Angeles, CA, July 11, 1949).

American photographer and writer. Misrach studied psychology at the University of California, Berkeley (1971), however, the political climate of the late 1960s; the West Coast photographic tradition of Edward Weston, Ansel Adams, Wynn Bullock and Dorothea Lange; and more particularly, a small exhibit of Roger Minick’s photographs stimulated Misrach to his “calling”. He purchased a Hasselblad camera and, essentially self-taught, embarked on a career as a fine art photographer.

Misrach is renowned for his epic works in which light, color and form convey an environmental message. Through different photographic strategies he has consistently addressed political and social issues. His earliest pictures record the riots, tear gassing and street people in Berkeley. By 1975, Misrach began his desert landscapes, creating a unique split-toning process for his night images. His monumental lifetime project, The Desert Cantos, is inspired by Ezra Pound’s poems, each theme named for its location or subject and numbered upon completion. With more than 28 different groupings (e.g. The Fires, The War [Bravo 20], Desert Seas, Clouds [Non-Equivalents], Las Vegas) that vary in focus, time span and the number of works, Misrach has photographed the deserts of California, Arizona and the Middle East, illustrating man’s impact on nature....


Ronald R. McCarty

(b Benicia, CA, Dec 12, 1872; d Palm Beach, FL, Feb 5, 1933).

American architect, interior designer, city planner, and developer. Mizner specialized in Mediterranean Revival architecture in California, New York, and Florida during the early 20th century and founded Mizner Industries, Inc. Mizner was the second youngest son born to Lansing Bond Mizner and Ella Watson Mizner. His father was an accomplished lawyer, politician, and landowner, later becoming the American ambassador to five republics in Latin America that are now Guatemala, San Salvador, Nicaragua, Panama, and Costa Rica. Travelling internationally with his father, Addison became fluent in Spanish and was inspired by the 16th- and 17th-century Spanish architecture of Central America. After moving to San Francisco in 1890, he attended Boones University in Berkeley. He continued his education at the University of Salamanca in Spain in 1892–3. Returning to the USA he began his professional training in San Francisco as an apprentice draftsman in 1894 with the firm of Willis J. Polk, becoming a full partner with the firm in ...


Christian Dagg


(b Meridian, MS, Dec 23, 1944; d Dec 30, 2001).

American educator, architect and artist working in the American Southeast. Mockbee attended architecture school at Auburn University in Auburn, Alabama, graduating in 1974. He formed a partnership with Coleman Coker in 1983. In 1995, the work of that firm was published in a book entitled “Mockbee/Coker, Thought and Process.” The body of work exhibited in that publication was described by Mockbee as “contemporary Modernism grounded in Southern culture.” Mockbee became well known for a personal architectural style reminiscent of barns, dogtrots and other common structures. It was often labeled as regionalist and relied on vernacular forms such as broad overhangs, gabled roofs and materials not typically used on residential projects. “I’m drawn to anything that has a quirkiness to it, a mystery to it,” Mockbee said. The Barton House designed in Madison County, Mississippi received recognition in the 1992 Record Houses Award Program and the Cook House designed in Oxford, Mississippi received a ...


Virginie Bobin

(b New York, NY, Nov 20, 1942).

American composer, performer, choreographer, vocalist, filmmaker and visual artist. After graduating from a combined performing arts program at Sarah Lawrence College, Bronxville, NY, in 1964, Monk joined the Judson Church group, which influenced her use of gestural movements in dance and her denial of the proscenium, already at stake in early pieces such as Juice: A Theater Cantata in 3 Installments (1969), which was performed in the spiraled ramp of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, the Minor Latham Playhouse at Barnard College and at her own New York loft. She founded her own company in 1968, the House, to explore an interdisciplinary approach to performance and quickly imposed her own style through pioneering site-specific works that established correspondences between dance, cinema, music and theater, and often explored cosmic themes such as spirituality, the quest of identity or the building of a community, as in Vessel, an Opera Epic...


Miwako Tezuka

(b Taegu, Korea, June 5, 1973).

Korean painter. When Moon moved to the USA in 1999 to attend the Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore, she already had an MFA in painting from Ewha Womans University in Seoul, Korea. She eventually earned her second MFA from University of Iowa in 2002. In her ink and acrylic painting on paper, Moon combines references to popular culture with images and techniques reminiscent of her Asian cultural background such as calligraphy.

The essential characteristic of Moon’s work is its visual and material hybridity that owes much to her expertise in both Asian and Western painting traditions. Dynamic use of color, allover composition and depictions of quasi-organic motifs in Moon’s landscapes may suggest affinity to abstract painting by Helen Frankenthaler. Just as many Abstract Expressionists did, Moon’s composition envisions primordial landscape of a life-giving planet where chaos is destructive and creative at the same time. For example, Haven (...


Nancy Siegel

(b Bolton-le-Moor, Lancs, England, Aug 19, 1829; d New York, NY, June 7, 1901).

American painter of English birth. His brothers, John (1831–1902), Thomas and Peter (1841–1914) were also artists (see Moran, Thomas, as was Thomas’s wife, Mary Nimmo Moran (1842–99). The eldest of ten children, Moran’s first instruction in drawing occurred in 1838 and continued after his arrival in the United States in 1844 where he worked in various vocations around Philadelphia. In 1853 he became an assistant to the marine painter Hamilton, James who taught Moran the art of lithography and encouraged him to open a studio for himself. Moran exhibited his first painting, View of the Susquehanna, at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts in 1854, and throughout his career his landscapes and seascapes met with much critical acclaim.

He shared his home and studio with his brother Thomas from 1855 until 1859 when he married his first wife, Elizabeth McManes, with whom he had two sons, Edward Percy (...


Kate Wight

(b Lafayette, AL, 1900; d New Orleans, LA, July 8, 1980).

American painter, musician and evangelical preacher. Morgan lived in Alabama and Georgia in her early life and was married to Will Morgan in 1928. At the age of 38 she experienced a divine calling, which prompted her to become a street evangelist. Morgan believed she was called by God to preach the Gospel and serve through her art. She left her family and husband and moved to New Orleans. There, she ran a mission and orphanage for 17 years until in 1956 she again heard the voice of God, this time specifically telling her to paint.

The subject of her art was primarily the Bible, and particularly the Book of Revelation. Morgan’s drawings and paintings were often figural and featured text with apocalyptic messages. A popular phrase in her works was “Jesus is my airplane.” After a later revelation, Morgan believed she was the bride of Christ and began wearing only white garments. She began portraying herself in this way within her works....


Tom Williams

(b New Haven, CT, December 18, 1888; d West Islip, NY, July 29, 1981).

American public official and urban planner. Moses was born in New Haven, CT and grew up in New Haven and New York City. He later attended Yale University where he received a BA (1909). He subsequently received a BA (1911) and an MA (1913) in jurisprudence from Wadham College at Oxford University, and he then returned to New York to pursue a PhD in political science at Columbia University (awarded in 1914). Before he had completed his studies at Columbia, he was appointed to New York City’s Bureau of Municipal Research, and in 1919, he was appointed by Governor Alfred E. Smith as the Chief of Staff to the New York State Reconstruction Commission. In 1924, Smith designated him the head of the New York and Long Island State Park Commissions, and in 1933, he was appointed to head the New York City Parks Department. In these positions, he was instrumental in the massive expansion of the parks, public housing and infrastructure of both the city and the state. While these efforts have often been celebrated by defenders of public projects, they have often been attacked by community activists, preservationists and critics of “urban renewal” and suburban sprawl....


Amy M. Mooney

(b New Orleans, LA, Oct 7, 1891; d Chicago, IL, Jan 16, 1981).

American painter. Motley consciously dedicated himself to the depiction of African Americans. Through his portraits and genre scenes, Motley created a visual legacy that extended the Harlem Renaissance beyond the boundaries of New York and incorporated the individualist and reform spirit of the Ashcan school. Optimistically, he believed that art could contribute to the end of racial prejudice, a sentiment espoused by both W. E. B. Du Bois and Alain Locke. During his academic training at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago from 1914 to 1918, Motley synthesized a variety of approaches towards the composition, color and meaning of art. He believed that each element of a painting should be carefully considered for both its significance and aesthetic contribution to the overall composition. After graduation, Motley began to exhibit works in Chicago, winning prestigious prizes and critical acclaim. In 1919 The Chicago Defender published his article the “Negro in Art,” in which he urged African American patronage and participation in art making. Though his realist portraits may reflect realist tenets, Motley synthesized elements of modernism, experimenting with abstraction and artifice as especially evident in his scenes of black urban life....