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 Martha Levy  (early 20th century)

About: Martha Levy
 

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Lived/Active: New York      Known for: landscape and town building easel paintings, mural

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Ad Code: 4
Bakkom
Brooklyn Street
Artwork images are copyright of the artist or assignee
This biography from the Archives of AskART:
The following is from Roger Van Oosten, art patron of Seattle and researcher:

Martha Levy's early art training included a membership at the Art Students League* where she attended the League's summer school in Woodstock in 1926 and 1932.  Also in Woodstock, she studied under John Fabian Carlson, and she later traveled to Italy in the late 1920s to further her art education.

In Woodstock from the mid-1920s to the mid-1930s, Levy focused her art on landscapes, choosing oil painted over tempera as her medium of choice.  Like many artists in the 1930's, Levy fell on hard times.  She joined the Public Works of Art Project (PWAP) in 1933.  The PWAP was the first New Deal Project to aid artists hard hit by the Great Depression.

Her PWAP painting, Landscape-Winter, was shown in a local exhibition of PWAP art in 1934, and was selected, along with the work of several other local artists, to represent the work of Woodstock area artists at a national exhibition of PWAP art at the Corcoran Gallery in Washington D.C.  The exhibit was the first national exhibition of federally funded art, and one of the most important art exhibitions in American history.

In 1935, she joined the Federal Art Project* of the Works Progress Administration and stayed on the project until 1940. The WPA/FAP was the largest, and most famous, of the New Deal programs to help starving artists through the 1930s.  In 1939, while on the project, she painted a mural entitled Men Working in a Slate Quarry for Granville Central School.

She exhibited at the Woodstock Artists Association (1933-34), Salons of America* (1934), the Corcoran Gallery in Washington DC (1934), the WPA Pavilion at the New York World's Fair* (1939), the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts* (1942), and the Woodstock Historical Society (1983).

Her works are in the collections of the Smithsonian American Art Museum and the Slate Valley Historical Museum in Granville, N.Y.

* For more in-depth information about these terms and others, see AskART.com Glossary http://www.askart.com/AskART/lists/Art_Definition.aspx




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