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 Florence Ann Morris  (1876 - 1947)

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Lived/Active: New Mexico/Missouri/Nevada      Known for: Southwest Indian portrait, genre and landscape painting

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Ad Code: 3
Florence Ann Morris
from Auction House Records.
Pueblo Scene
Artwork images are copyright of the artist or assignee
This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Following is the obituary of the artist,


Mrs. R. E. Morris, long resident of Roswell, died at St. Mary’s Hospital last night at 7:30. Her death was a result of a cerebral hemorrhage. She had been ill for several years. She had been in the hospital since Friday when the hemorrhage began and remained unconscious until her death.
Funeral services will be conducted at Westrum Chapel Friday afternoon at 4:00 by the Rev. Orbin M. Turner. Musical selections will be under the direction of Mrs. W. W. Akin. Pall bearers will be I. D. Shinkle, Clarence Hinkle, F. L. Austin, Lea Rowland, H. H. McGee and S. P. Lodewick. Burial will be in South Park.

Florence Ann Morris was born in Nevada, Mo. She was the daughter of Luther V. Baker and Elizabeth Baker. She attended Nevada High School and later studied at Cottey College in Nevada and at the University of Missouri in Columbia.

She married Richard E. Morris of Springfield, Mo. in 1895. In 1925 she lost her hearing after an attack of flu and it was at this time that she took up art. She studied under A. J. Hammond of Boston and W. E. Rollins of Sante Fe. In 1926 she went to France and Italy to study portraiture. In 1930 she again went abroad to exhibit her paintings. These were so successful that they are known and appreciated internationally.

Mrs. Morris has always been interested in the development of art in Roswell. Even in her busiest years of painting she has found time to conduct art classes. By this means, she has guided many students through the fundamentals of art, and some of them have become artists in their own right.

Mrs. Morris served 12 successive years as chairman of the art committee of the Roswell’s Women’s Club and it was through this office that she promoted the annual art exhibits that became so well known. It was through her efforts that the Woman’s Club started its permanent collection of paintings.

Mrs. Morris was an active member of the Methodist Church until her health failed. She belonged to the PEO and was an honorary member of the International Beta Sigma Phi sorority.

She is survived by her husband, R. E. Morris, of Roswell; her daughter, Mrs. R. L. Villard of Roswell and Mrs. C. W. Weaver of Denver, Cob., and four great-grandchildren.

Online, White River Valley Historical Quarterly, Fall, 1984

This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Born and raised in Nevada, Missouri, Florence Morris became noted for her paintings of Southwest Indians and pueblos, especially scenes of New Mexico, although she traveled to Arizona where she became friends with the Mescalero Apache people.

Morris showed early art talent that was so remarkable that when she attended Cottey College in Missouri, the director of the school had an art class outside of the curriculum established just for her. She also attended the University of Missouri. In 1895, when she was 24 years old, she married Richard E. Morris, a teacher. They both taught at Southwest Missouri State University in Springfield, but an illness and childbirth in 1898 led to her quitting the teaching position.

In 1912, the family moved to Roswell, New Mexico because of her need for a drier climate. There she became active in the community and did not focus on her art talents until 1925 when she lost her hearing in a flu epidemic. To cope with that circumstance, she took up painting again, and that year studied with Arthur Hammond, a Boston artist who was visiting in Roswell. The next year, she worked with Warren Rollins in Santa Fe and then went to Paris to study with Louis Bregoli, an Italian artist.

Returning to Roswell, Florence Morris continued her painting, which included portraits of prominent persons such as New Mexico Governor Richard Dillon; artist Warren Rollins; and Will Rogers, famous cowboy entertainer. This painting hangs at the Claremore, Oklahoma Library.

She also gained much attention for her paintings of Native Americans, whom she visited frequently in their pueblos. Among her subjects were the people of the Santa Fe, Zuni, Hopi and Acoma pueblos, and she also did landscape scenes and still lifes, often working from a studio she kept in the White Mountains.

Exhibition venues included the Museum of New Mexico, Galeria d'Art du Montparnasse in Paris, and the Washington DC Society of Independent Artists.

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

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