|This biography from the Archives of AskART:|
|Born in England, Alice Coutts is best known for her paintings of Indian
children and shows the influence of one of her teachers, Grace
Carpenter Hudson with whom her work was sometimes confused. She
also did landscapes and still life.|
As a child, she was taken to
Australia by her parents, Charles and Maria Hobbs, but her art studies
began when she was a teenager in Paris at the Academie Julian under
Jules Lefebvre. While there, she married artist Gordon Coutts,
who was an instructor at the Art Society of New South Wales in Sydney,
Australia. Without her parents' approval she married him in San
Francisco in 1904, and the next year they went on a world tour. Then
they moved to San Francisco in 1906, but lost everything in the
earthquake and fire.
The couple moved across the Bay to Piedmont, and in 1911, went on
another extended trip through Europe and the Hawaiian Islands, but returned to America because of World War I.
In 1917, they divorced, and the next year Alice married Frederick
Bolton, and they lived in the Piedmont home.
However, her most productive time as an artist was during her first
marriage, and committed to painting first hand, she traveled amongst
California and Southwest Indians, camping with the Hopi of Northern
Arizona and living with the Pomo Indians of northern California.
After 1918, she became increasingly reclusive, although she and her
husband traveled to the Orient and Europe, and she continued to sketch
for her own pleasure. A nephew reported that she got a special
gas ration card during World War II so she could continue traveling to
painting locations. However, she discontinued most of her
painting activity for the last fifty years of her life.
Her works were part of the exhibition at the Mark Hopkins Institute lost in the fire of 1906. One of her paintings, The Jockey, was on the cover of Sunset Magazine
in 1910. She exibited work at the San Francisco Art Association
and the Sequoia Club in San Francisco, and had one-person exhibits in
1910 and 1911 at Gump's Department Store.
Phil Kovinick and Marian Yoshiki Kovinick, An Encyclopedia of Women Artists of the American West
Edan Hughes, Artists in California, 1786-1940
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