AFA Autumn 2019

Autumn 28 | w HAPPENINGS Maud Briggs Knowlton Artist and Pioneer Art Museum Director Through September 30, 2019 Monhegan Museum of Art & History 1 Lighthouse Hill, Monhegan Island, Maine For more information, call 207.596.7003 or visit is summer the Monhegan Museum of Art & History will celebrate the art and life of Maud Briggs Knowlton (1870–1956), one of the rst women to direct a major American art museum and one of the few women to paint on Monhegan Island. A Life Made in Art: Maud Briggs Knowlton is the rst major retrospective of Knowlton’s work and will include more than 40 watercolors, oils, etchings, drawings, and painted porcelain from Knowlton’s time on Monhegan Island and in New Hampshire. Accompanying the exhibition will be displays of turn-of-the-century photographs, cyanotypes, and glass-plate negatives by Knowlton’s husband, Edward, that capture life as it existed on Monhegan Island when they rst arrived on its shores in the 1890s. Knowlton started her artistic career as a china painter, and by 1895, began to exhibit in prominent regional venues such as the Boston Art Club and became a member of the Boston Society of Arts and Crafts. By 1900 Knowlton began to expand her reputation in the eld of china decoration to a national level and became a founding instructor at the Institute of Arts and Sciences in Manchester, New Hampshire. Rising to become a cultural leader of that community, in 1929 she was named the rst director of the Currier Museum of Art. On Monhegan, Knowlton was captivated by the rustic architecture and cottage ower gardens. She came to know many other artists attracted by the island’s rich diversity, including George Bellows, Andrew Winter, Jay Hall Connaway, Leo Meissner, and Frederick J. Waugh. Knowlton included many of these artists in group exhibitions at the Currier, and in 1939, organized the rst museum exhibition of watercolors by the then-21-year-old Andrew Wyeth just as his career was taking o . A Life Made in Art is co-organized by the Monhegan Museum of Art & History and the Currier Museum of Art, Manchester, New Hampshire, where it will be on view after Monhegan from February 15 through May 10, 2020. A 92-page catalogue is available at the Monhegan Museum Store for $25. Edward Knowlton, Working Waterfront, Splitting Table, Fish Beach, ca. 1900. Glass-plate negative. Monhegan Museum of Art & History; Gift of Leo and Bernice Meissner. Edward Knowlton, Maud Briggs Knowlton, circa 1897. Gelatin silver print. Monhegan Museum of Art & History. Maud Briggs Knowlton (1870–1956), Spruce Grove, Monhegan, 1940. Oil on canvasboard, 9½ x 13 inches. Collection of Carol A. and Robert L. Stahl.