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 Blanche Chloe Grant  (1874 - 1948)

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Lived/Active: New Mexico/Kansas      Known for: Indian genre, portrait and landscape painting

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Blanche Chloe Grant
An example of work by Blanche Chloe Grant
Artwork images are copyright of the artist or assignee
This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Born in Leavenworth, Kansas and growing up in Indianapolis, Blanche Chloe Grant created landscape and figure work associated with the American Southwest.

She attended high school in Indianapolis and graduated in the first class from Vassar College in Poughkeepsie, New York.  Her parents, thinking it unladylike, would not allow her to take the art classes that she desired.

However, she later pursued her art interest and talents in Massachusetts where she studied with Francis Mortimer Lamb in Stoughton, which was near her home in Bridgewater.  From 1906 to 1908, she attended the Boston Museum School of Fine Arts, studying with William Paxton, and from 1908 to 1910, attended the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts where one of her teachers was William Merritt Chase.  This period was followed by four months in Europe. 

Returning to America, she had illustration jobs in Philadelphia and Wilmington.  In Philadelphia, she became active in clubs for working girls and lived for several seasons at the College Settlement. 

In Wilmington, she was a part of Howard Pyle's circle of illustrators, and by 1914, was an established magazine illustrator as well as easel painter of landscapes and portraiture.  She took occasional classes in New York at the Art Students League, and also took summer outdoor painting classes with Frank Noyes.

In 1916, Blanche Grant moved to Lincoln, Nebraska where she took a position as associate professor in the art department of the University.  She was there for four years, and in 1920, moved for the remainder of her life to Taos, New Mexico, having fallen in love with the area on a vacation trip.  She became a very active member of the community, served as editor of the Taos Valley News, and became a well known historian and ethnologist who gave lectures and wrote books including When Trails Were New: The Story of Taos, 1934.  As an artist, she did easel painting including a portrait of Kit Carson and, emphasizing the romantic and colorful side of life in Taos, did scenes of Native American genre and landscapes.  She also did murals and etchings.

Her work is in the Harwood Foundation, Southwest Museum of Los Angeles and the  county courthouse in Taos.

Phil Kovinick and Marian Yoshiki Kovinick, An Encyclopedia of Women Artists of the American West

Exhibition Record (Museums, Institutions and Awards):
Museum of New Mexico, 1925 and 1928.
Taos Artists? Association; Society of Independent Artists.

This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Blanche Chloe Grant was born in Leavenworth, Kansas in 1874 and died in Taos, New Mexico in 1948.  A graduate of Vassar College, she also had studied art at the Art League in New York City and attended other art schools. S he continued her successful art career in painting throughout her life but began a second career as a writer after moving to Taos in 1920 and this brought dramatic changes for her. 

She first took on the job of editor of the Taos Valley News and began her years of research into the history of Taos and the Southwest.  This led then to a series of books, many of which were about Taos and the people who lived there.  Her art also changed and she painted Native American and Western subjects.

Although an active participant in the Taos art scene, she continued to show paintings in New York. Gradually her main interests turned to her writing.  Her books included Doing It Alone, When Old Trails Were New, Taos Indians, and she edited a biography of Kit Carson based on his notes, Kit Carson's Own Story of His Life.

Sunstone Press, book description of When Old Trails Were New by Blanche Chloe Grant.

This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Born Leavenworth, Sept. 23, 1874; died Taos, NM, June 19, 1948. Illustrator. Painter, specialized in landscapes and Native Americans. Author. Etcher. Educated in Indianapolis schools, graduate of Vassar College in 1896, studied at the School of Fine Arts in Boston with William Paxton, at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine 88 Arts with William Merritt Chase, at the Art Students League in New York. She became part of Howard Pyle's circle of illustrators in Wilmington and by 1914 she was established as a magazine illustrator and landscape painter. Moved to Lincoln, NB to teach art at the University of Nebraska from 1916-20. Moved to Taos, NM in 1920 where she became editor of the Taos Valley News around 1922. Wrote When Old Trails Were New; the Story of Taos (1934) and other books about New Mexico and Kit Carson.
Honorable mention, St. Paul Institute, 1917.

Harwood Foundation, Taos; Southwest Museum, Los Angeles; murals in the Taos Community Church.

Taos Artists? Association; Society of Independent Artists.

Susan Craig, "Biographical Dictionary of Kansas Artists (active before 1945)"
Sain, Lydia. Kansas Artists, compiled by Lydia Sain from 1932 to 1948. Typed Manuscript, 1948.; Newlin, Gertrude Dix (Development of Art in Kansas. Typed Manuscript, 1951); Dawdy, Doris Ostrander. Artists of the American West: A Biographical Dictionary. Chicago: Swallow Press, 1974. Samuels, Peggy. Illustrated Biographical Encyclopedia of Artists of the American West. Garden City, NY: Doubleday & Co., 1976.; American Art Annual. New York: American Federation of Arts, 1898-1947 14, 20, 22, 24, 26, 27; Who?s Who in American Art. New York: American Federation of Arts, 1936- v.1=1936-37 v.3= 1941-42 v.2=1938-39 v.4=1940-47. 2, 3; Reinbach, Edna, comp. ?Kansas Art and Artists?, in Collections of the Kansas State Historical Society. v. 17, 1928. p. 571-585.; Witt, David L. The Taos Artists: A Historical Narrative and Biographical Dictionary.
This and over 1,750 other biographies can be found in Biographical Dictionary of Kansas Artists (active before 1945) compiled by Susan V. Craig, Art & Architecture Librarian at University of Kansas.

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Blanche Grant is also mentioned in these AskART essays:
Taos Pre 1940

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