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 Lucy May Stanton  (1875 - 1931)

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Lived/Active: Georgia/Massachusetts      Known for: miniature portrait, landscape, education

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Ad Code: 3
Lucy May Stanton
from Auction House Records.
Artwork images are copyright of the artist or assignee
This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Born in Atlanta, Georgia, Lucy Stanton became a painter in miniature of portraits and landscapes but was especially noted for portraits done with an innovative technique she developed called 'puddling'.  This method involved the application of very wet watercolor, which resulted in a loose-wash affect and portraits that captured the mood and personality of the sitter but not the exact features.  Stanton's approach was abreast with the modernist art movement of impressionism and other styles pushing the boundaries of realism, which is likely the reason she is credited as "one of the most prominent figures of the turn-of-the-century miniature revival." (Hirshler 197)  For traditional miniaturists, it was a time of a dying art form because of the advent of photography.

Her subjects spoke of her southern heritage and included African Americans, mountain people and frontiersmen.

Lucy Stanton began her art education at age seven when she was in New Orleans for the winter with her family and took classes from Sally Seago, a French woman.  In 1888, when she was age 12, she attended the Southern Female Seminary in LaGrange, Georgia, and worked there with another French artist, Ada Autrie.  In 1889, she toured Europe with her father and painted in Venice, and returning she enrolled in Cox College, also known as the Southern Female College, in LaGrange, Georgia.  She graduated from there in 1893. The next year, 1894, she became an assistant to James P. Field at Cox College.

In 1896, she went to Paris for four years, studying at the Ecole de la Grande Chaumiere and privately with Augustus Koopman, James Whistler and Virginia Reynolds, a miniaturist.  She studied anatomy at the Sorbonne.  Returning to America, she opened studios in several locations.

For three years, she was in Atlanta in the Grand Opera House; in 1901, she went to New York to the Bryant Park Studios; and in 1904 she was briefly in California where she taught and painted in Los Angeles.  She then returned to Paris for further study and won a blue-ribbon with her painting entry in the Paris Salon of 1906.  From 1910 to 1913, she was in Athens, Georgia, and from 1913-1916, withdrew from family and patrons to Valley Town, a remote area of North Carolina.

In 1916, Lucy Stanton moved to Boston for ten years, and during the summers was at Ogunquit, Maine, and Nantucket.  She exhibited at prestigious Boston venues including the Copley Society, the Guild of Boston Artists and Doll and Richards Gallery.  She also taught art and art history at Milton Academy and Dana Hall, both private schools in the Boston area, 1919-1920.

Her painting career included the completion of three portraits of Adelina Patti, operatic soprano, and the exhibiting of 93 works at the Pennsylvania Society of Miniature Painters and the Pennsylvania Academy, where to 1931, she entered over 100 miniatures.  In 1914, she exhibitied at the Royal Society of Miniaturists in London, and in 1915, she entered the Panama-Pacific Exposition in San Francisco.

The last five years of her life she lived in Athens, Georgia where she painted and taught school.  She died there in 1931.


Erica Hirschler, A Studio of Her Own

Information to AskART on behalf of the family of the artist.  Source is The Art of Lucy May Stanton, exhibition catalogue of a 2002 exhibition at the Museum of Art of the University of Georgia, Athens.

American Art Review
, June 2002

Edan Hughes, Artists in California, 1786-1940

Jules Heller and Nancy Heller, North American Women Artists of the Twentieth Century

This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Lucy May Stanton was born in Atlanta, GA on May 22, 1875.  Stanton began her art training at age seven in New Orleans under Mme. Seago and continued at the Southern Female Seminary in LaGrange, GA under Mme. Ada Autrie.  She further studied in Paris at Ecole des Beaux Arts and Académie Julian during the 1890s.  In 1898 she opened a studio in the Grand Opera House in Atlanta; in 1901 she moved to the Bryant Park Studios in New York.  During 1904 she taught and painted in Los Angeles and the following year returned to Paris for further study.  From 1910-13 she lived and worked in Athens, GA; from 1914-16 she was in Andrews, NC; after 1916 she had a studio on Beacon Hill in Boston and made a trip to Bermuda in 1925. 

Member:  Penn. and American Societies of Miniature Painters; Wash. WC Club; Guild of Boston Artists; Copley Society. 

Exh:  NAD; PAFA 1899-1931; Paris Salon; Ruskin Art Club (LA), 1904.  In:  MM.
Edan Hughes, "Artists in California, 1786-1940"
City Directory; Fld.
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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Lucy Stanton is also mentioned in these AskART essays:
San Francisco Panama-Pacific Exhibition 1915

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