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 Isabelle Percy West  (1883 - 1976)

About: Isabelle Percy West
 

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Lived/Active: California      Known for: landscape, botanics, figure, graphics

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Isabelle Clark Percy is primarily known as Isabelle Percy West

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Isabelle Percy West
from Auction House Records.
Maartje and Neltje in the yard, 1913
Artwork images are copyright of the artist or assignee
This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Landscape painter and printmaker, Isabelle Clark Percy West was born on November 6, 1882, in Alameda, California, growing up in Oakland, California, except for the years 1894-1896 in Portland, Maine at the Fort Wayne School for girls. In 1901-1905, she studied art with Arthur F. Mathews at the California School of Design, in San Francisco; in New York with Henry Snell; and in 1905-1907 with Arthur W. Dow at Teachers College, Columbia University, in New York City. She taught in 1907-1909 at the California School of Arts and Crafts, in Berkeley, then returned for postgraduate work to Teachers College. Afterward, she went abroad to study painting and lithography.

Back in America in 1912, West lived in Oakland, California until 1916. She married George Parsons West, a journalist and historian in that year, though they would be divorced in 1934. She then lived in Brooklyn and New York City until 1920. She lived in Sausalito, California from 1921-1968, teaching again at the California School of Arts and Crafts from 1921 to 1942. In 1923, she returned to Columbia University to gain her M.A. degree in comparative arts. She spent her last years in Greenbrae, California.

While California seascapes, landscapes, missions and trees in Marin and Monterey counties dominate her large body of work, she also painted in Nevada, Colorado and adobes in New Mexico. West made many wood-block prints and bookplates. Her work is in the collections of the Oakland Museum; California Historical Society, San Francisco; and California College of Arts and Crafts, Oakland.

West had a one-person show in 1973 at the California College of Arts and Crafts, Oakland. Other exhibitions include the Paris Salon; New York Watercolor Society; Ebell Club, Oakland; Hotel Del Monte Art Gallery, Monterey; Carmel Art Association, California; University of California, Berkeley; and San Francisco venues: Cap and Bells Club, Sketch Club, California Society of Etchers, Panama-Pacific International Exposition, San Francisco; San Francisco Art Association; San Francisco Society of Women Artists, Society of Western Artists, and Gump's.

Isabel Percy West died August 15, 1976, in Greenbrae, California.

References: Who Was Who in American Art; Who's who in American Art 1953; Petteys; Woman's Who's Who in America; Dawdy 3; Hughes; Schwartz, Northern California Art; San Francisco Call, 3 Jan 1909; San Francisco Chronicle, 21 Jun 1914, 11 Oct 1914, 10 Jan 1915, 17 Aug 1976; Oakland Tribune, 23 May 1920, 18 Aug 1976; Independent-Journal (San Rafael, California), 16 Aug 1976; California State Library card (1907); US Census 1900, Alameda County, CA, ED 373, pg 1; E. Solinski (cousin), 1976; D. Friend (Alumni Office, California College of Arts & Crafts), 1992.



Source:
Phil Kovinick and Marian Yoshiki Kovinick, "An Encyclopedia of Artists of the American West"


This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Born in Alameda, CA on Nov. 6, 1882, the daughter of architect George W. Percy who designed the Academy of Sciences in Golden Gate Park and Hobart Building in San Francisco, and the Christian Brothers Winery in Sonoma. Isabelle studied art at Mark Hopkins Institute under Arthur Mathews, with Brangwyn in London, and Dow and Snell in New York. After earning an M.A. degree at Columbia University in 1907, she returned to California to cofound the CCAC. She continued to teach there until her retirement in 1941 at which time a gallery was named in her honor. In 1916 she wed George P. West, a San Francisco newspaper editor, and settled into a home across the bay in Sausalito where she painted until her death in nearby Greenbrae on Aug. 15, 1976. Her work includes landscapes and figure studies. Member: Sketch Club (SF); SFAA; Calif. Society of Etchers. Exh: Starr King Fraternity, 1905; Del Monte Art Gallery (Monterey), 1908, 1909; Paris Salon, 1911; Sorosis Club, 1913; Calif. Society of Etchers, 1913; PPIE, 1915 (bronze medal); Calif. Artists, Golden Gate Park Museum, 1915; SFAA, 1916-25; Oakland Art Gallery, 1932; CCAC, 1973 (solo). In: CHS; Oakland Museum; CCAC.
Source:
Edan Hughes, "Artists in California, 1786-1940"
Art in California (R. L. Bernier, 1916); American Art Annual 1907-33; Women Artists of the American West; California State Library (Sacramento); SF Chronicle, 8-17-1976 (obituary).
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.

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