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 Zulma (Parker) Steele  (1881 - 1979)

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Lived/Active: Wisconsin/Vermont/New York      Known for: painting, pottery, printmaking, furniture design

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Ad Code: 3
Zulma DeLacy Steele-Parker
from Auction House Records.
Catskill Nocturne
Artwork images are copyright of the artist or assignee
This biography from the Archives of AskART:
A member of the Byrdcliffe Arts & Crafts colony, founded 1902 at Woodstock, New York, Zulma Steele-Parker designed furniture, books and her own line of pottery called "Zedware."  She was among the first artists to live at the Byrdcliffe Colony, moving there in 1903, and with Edna Walker, she designed 'mission oak' furniture "on which she painted landscape and leaf designs, c. 1902-09." (Falk, 3153)  Steele had close ties to Woodstock, because her ancestors were the Livingstons who founded the village and "were the first legal owners of the area." (Green, 176)

In Impressionist style, she, who was born in Wisconsin, showed much interest and affection for the landscape of her adopted state of New York.  She painted scenes of the Catskill Mountains.  In 1926, she married Neilson Parker, a farmer, and after his death two years later, she spent much time in Europe.

Zulma Steele took art training at the Art Institute of Chicago, Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, the Boston Museum of Fine Arts School, the Art Students League summer school at Woodstock, and in Paris in the 1920s with André Lhote.  Steele was close friends with Birge Harrison and his wife, and enrolled in his classes when he became Director of the Students League in Woodstock.  "Steele devoted much of her prodigious energy to painting.  Her landscapes were reminiscent of Harrison's; airy and impressionistic in feeling, but they remained distinct in their bright coloration and personal context."  (Green, 176)  And like her teacher, Arthur Dow, she refrained from placing figures in her landscapes.

Source:
Peter Hastings Falk, Editor, Who Was Who in American Art
Nancy Green, Frederick Moffatt, et all; Arthur Wesley Dow: His Art and Influence, Spanierman Gallery 1999 exhibition catalogue

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Zulma Steele is also mentioned in these AskART essays:
San Francisco Panama-Pacific Exhibition 1915

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