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 Harry Willson Watrous  (1857 - 1940)

About: Harry Willson Watrous


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Lived/Active: New York/California      Known for: portrait, still life, landscape

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BIOGRAPHY for Harry Watrous
1857 (San Francisco, California)
1940 (New York City)

New York/California

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portrait, still life, landscape

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This biography from the Archives of AskART:
A native of San Francisco, Harry Watrous is known for stylized figural works, academic portraits, and night scenes.

In 1881, he went to Paris for five years and studied at the Julian Academy and in Bonnat's atelier. He was influenced by Jean Leon Gerome and William Bouguereau and especially influenced by Jean Louis Meissonier.

His academic genre painting was so popular that a Parisian art dealer marketed it successfully in London as did prestigious American collectors before he returned to this country.

Around 1905, his eyesight began failing, and he became more innovative, specializing in highly seductive, stylized female figure paintings.

This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Born in San Francisco, CA on Sept. 17, 1857. Watrous studied in Paris at Académie Julian. After settling in NYC, he was secretary of the NAD from 1895-1920, president in 1933. He died there on May 10, 1940. Member: Lotus Club; NA; Salmagundi Club. Exh: NAD, 1894-1934; Pan American Expo (Buffalo), 1901 (medal); Louisiana Purchase Expo (St Louis), 1904; Lewis & Clark Expo (Portland), 1905; Grand Central Gallery (NYC), 1937 (solo). In: Shasta State Historical Museum; Montpelier (VT) Museum; MM; St Louis Museum; Brooklyn Museum; Fort Worth Museum.
Edan Hughes, "Artists in California, 1786-1940"
Who's Who in American Art 1936-40; Dictionary of American Painters, Sculptors & Engravers (Fielding, Mantle).
Nearly 20,000 biographies can be found in Artists in California 1786-1940 by Edan Hughes and is available for sale ($150). For a full book description and order information please click here.

Biography from Questroyal Fine Art, LLC:
A leading figure in New York’s turn-of-the-century art establishment, Harry Watrous had a successful career as a painter and administrator. After training in the French academic mode at the Academie Julian in Paris, Watrous returned to New York and won recognition for his stylized female portraits, elegant still lifes, and enchanting evening landscapes. His work earned gold medals from the St. Louis Exposition of 1904 and the National Academy of Design. Watrous went on to serve as the President of the National Academy, where he helped to set the artistic currents of the time. His work can now be seen in The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Corcoran Gallery of Art, The Brooklyn Museum of Art, and the Portland Museum of Art.

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