Art Colonies: Historical
The Tides of Provincetown: Pivotal Years in America’s Oldest Continuous Art Colony, 1899–2011 by Alexander J. Noelle, Pamela Barr (Editor) – Paperback: 176 pages; New Britain Museum (Jul 13, 2011)

This exhibition and accompanying catalogue focus on Provincetown's legacy as an art colony, during the period from Charles W. Hawthorne's founding of the Cape Cod School of Art in 1899 to the present day. Covering more than 100 artists, this is the largest and most comprehensive survey of the art colony completed in over forty years.

Perspectives on the Provincetown Art Colony by Deborah Forman – Paperback: 224 pages; Schiffer Ltd; 1st edition (Jun 10, 2011)

The most comprehensive review of the Provincetown Artist Colony to date, this two-volume set is complete with conversations with many artists, including Robert Motherwell, Jack Tworkov, Red Grooms, Raphael Soyer, and Chaim Gross, and nearly 300 images of works by those artists, as well as Childe Hassam, Hans Hofmann, Franz Kline, Adolph Gottlieb, Edward Hopper, and numerous others. Attracted by its sparkling natural light and spirit of freedom, artists have flocked to Provincetown since the late 19th century. Now recognized by the National Trust for Historic Preservation as the "home of the nation's oldest art colony," Provincetown is a microcosm of American art of the last century, as well as a community for artists who played vital roles in American art movements.

Rocky Neck Art Colony, 1850-1950 by Judith A. Curtis – Hardcover: 160 pages; Rocky Neck Art Colony; 1st edition (Apr 2008)

Beautifully illustrated with over 150 mostly color reproductions.

Chicago Artist Colonies by Keith M. Stolte, Amy E. Keller (Foreword), Zac Bleicher (Foreword) – Paperback: 208 pages; The History Press (Jul 22, 2019)

For more than a century, Chicago's leading painters, sculptors, writers, actors, dancers and architects congregated together in close-knit artistic enclaves. After the Columbian Exposition, they set up shop in places like Lambert Tree Studios and the 57th Street Artist Colony. Nationally renowned figures like Theodore Dreiser, Margaret Anderson, Frank Lloyd Wright and Louis Sullivan became colleagues, confidants and neighbors.

In the 1920s, Carl Sandburg, Emma Goldman, Ernest Hemingway, Ben Hecht, Edna St. Vincent Millay and Clarence Darrow transformed the speakeasies and bohemian bistros of Towertown into Chicago's Greenwich Village. In Old Town, Renaissance man Edgar Miller and progressive architect Andrew Rebori collaborated on the Frank Fisher Studios, one of the finest examples of Art Moderne architecture in the country. From Nellie Walker to Roger Ebert, Keith Stolte visits Chicago's ascendant artistic spirits in their chosen sanctuaries.

A World Apart: Anna Ancher and the Skagen Art Colony by National Museum of Women in the Arts, Elizabeth Lynch – Paperback; 2013

The first exhibition in the United States to focus on the Danish painter Anna Ancher (1859–1935) and the artist colony at Skagen, Denmark, A World Apart: Anna Ancher and the Skagen Art Colony will introduce American audiences to the exceptional art created in the late nineteenth century in this village in northern Denmark.

Bert Geer Phillips and the Taos Art Colony by Julie Schimmel, Robert R. White – Hardcover: 352 pages; University of New Mexico Press; 1st edition (Jun 1, 1994)

Bert Geer Phillips settled in Taos, New Mexico in 1898, becoming one of the first Anglo artists to reside permanently in New Mexico and a founder of the Taos Art Colony. Traveling nearby, Phillips happened upon Taos when the wheel broke on the wagon carrying him and fellow artist Ernest Blumenschein.

Nothing in his European training prepared Phillips for the unique mix of light, landscape, and culture he encountered and these immediately captivated him. This book is the first full-length description of Phillips's art and life as well as his contribution to the establishment of the Taos art colony, and ultimately to the growth of New Mexico as a mecca for artists and artisans.

Santa Fe Art Colony, 1900-1942 by Sharyn Rohlfsen Udall – Paperback: 99 pages; Gerald Peters Gallery; 1st edition (Jul 1, 1987)

Exhibition, Jul 17-Aug 8, 1987, Gerald Peters Gallery, Santa Fe, New Mexico The catalog of an exhibition of paintings produced in New Mexico in the early twentieth century includes a discussion of how and why the area attracted artists and brief biographies of the painters.

Indian Summers: Washington State College and the Nespelem Art Colony, 1937-41 by J. J. Creighton, Jeff Creighton – Paperback: 78 pages; Washington State Univ Press; 1st edition (Sep 30, 2000)

For five summers, Washington State College students and instructors took up residence in and around the headquarters of the Colville Confederated Tribes in north central Washington. This book provides a snapshot of the students, instructors, and Indians at Nespelem, and beautifully displays the artwork their partnership created.

Artists at Continent's End: The Monterey Peninsula Art Colony, 1875-1907 by Scott A. Shields – Paperback: 357 pages; University of California Press; 1st edition (Apr 17, 2006)

Few regions rival the magnificence of California's Monterey Peninsula. This beauty, together with a mild climate, rich history, and simplicity of lifestyle, encouraged the development of one of the nation’s foremost art colonies. From 1875 to the first years of the twentieth century, artists were drawn to the towns of Monterey, Pacific Grove, and then Carmel. Artists at Continent's End is the first in-depth examination of the importance of the Monterey Peninsula, which during this period came to epitomize California art. Beautifully illustrated with a wealth of images, including many never before published, this book tells the fascinating story of eight principal protagonists—Jules Tavernier, William Keith, Charles Rollo Peters, Arthur Mathews, Evelyn McCormick, Francis McComas, Gottardo Piazzoni, and photographer Arnold Genthe—and a host of secondary players who together established an enduring artistic legacy.

The Cos Cob Art Colony: Impressionists on the Connecticut Shore by Dr. Susan G. Larkin – Hardcover: 256 pages; Yale University Press; 1st edition (Mar 1, 2001)

What Argenteuil in the 1870s was to French Impressionists, Cos Cob between 1890 and 1920 was to American Impressionists Childe Hassam, Theodore Robinson, John Twachtman, J. Alden Weir, and their followers. These artists and writers came together to work in the modest Cos Cob section of Greenwich, Connecticut, testing new styles and new themes in the stimulating company of colleagues.

Call of the Coast: Art Colonies of New England (Portland Museum of Art) ~ Mr. Thomas Andrew Denenberg, Amy Kurtz Lansing, Susan Danly, Jamie Wyeth (Preface) – Paperback: 128 pages; Portland Museum of Art (Jun 2, 2009)

The early 20th century brought renewed focus upon the image of the coast and witnessed the formation of art colonies in Old Lyme, Connecticut, and Ogunquit and Monhegan, Maine. These creative communities became an inspiration for artists and art students, among them Edward Hopper, Childe Hassam, Robert Henri, Rockwell Kent, and George Bellows. Visually stunning, Call of the Coast: Art Colonies of New England explores the importance of place for artists in these colonies, and the development of impressionist Connecticut and modernist Maine within the visual traditions of the coast of New England.

Featuring approximately 80 works, Call of the Coast illustrates each major painting with extensive interpretative text and includes documentary photography to provide historical context for the artworks.

Hamptons Bohemia: Two Centuries of Artists and Writers on the Beach by Helen Harrison, Constance Ayers, Edward Albee (Foreword) – Hardcover: 176 pages; Chronicle Books (Apr 1, 2002)

An unspoiled coastline bathed in spectacular light—just far enough from Manhattan bustle—made the Hamptons seductive for generations of creative types. Hamptons Bohemia: Two Centuries of Artists and Writers on the Beach is an entertaining survey of the personalities who found a summer or year-round haven on the southeastern end of Long Island. Numerous color photographs—of artworks, personalities, and landscape views—offer inviting glimpses of the shifting tides of culture. The story begins with early 19th-century figures like James Fenimore Cooper, who abandoned a failing whaling business to take up writing novels. Then came the genteel landscape painters with their portable easels and sunshades. By the 1950s (the era of Jackson Pollock, Willem de Kooning, Frank O'Hara, John Ashbery, and many others), bohemia was in full swing. Since then the Hamptons have become a clubby getaway for artists who've already made it, from Kurt Vonnegut to Julian Schnabel. —Cathy Curtis

Cottages by the Sea, The Handmade Homes of Carmel, America's First Artist Community by Linda Leigh Paul, Radek Kurzaj (Photographer) – Hardcover: 224 pages; Universe Publishing (Nov 18, 2000)

Carmel, California, has always been a community of artists, writers, and freethinkers. During the early part of its rich history, the area was home to Robinson Jeffers, Mary Austin, Ansel Adams, Charles Greene, Jack London, George Sterling, Upton Sinclair, and Henry Miller, among other great artists of the twentieth century. During the late 1980s, actor Clint Eastwood, a longtime resident, served as mayor.

While much about Carmel has changed since the days when Robinson Jeffers could be seen strolling the beach, the area remains one of America's most beautiful. It is also home to many of America's most charming but rarely seen cottages. In Carmel's residential district—a very private, heavily wooded area surrounding the shops and tourist attractions of the town's often busy main street—there are no sidewalks or streetlights. The U.S. Postal Service does not offer mail delivery. Homes have no addresses; they are simply known by name.

Here, it is not uncommon for tourists, so intrigued by the uniqueness of the local architecture, to climb the fences of private homes in order to get a closer look or snapshot of the house on the other side. Now, for the first time, 34 of these homes can be seen more advantageously, in more than 270 specially commissioned and archival exterior and interior photographs.

A Place of Beauty: The Artists and Gardens of the Cornish Colony by Alma M. Gilbert, Judith B. Tankard – Hardcover: 136 pages; Ten Speed Press (Aug 2000)

Much has changed since the previous turn of the century, but our appreciation of the restrained and peaceful beauty of Cornish, New Hampshire has remained. In the early 1900s, Cornish was renowned as an artist's colony filled with magical gardens that appeared in the work of many resident artists like Frances Houston, William Hyde, Maria Oakey Dewing, and Stephen and Maxfield Parrish. In many cases, the fame of the gardens outlasted the reputation of the artist, but in A Place of Beauty, the art and the gardens that provided inspiration are seen as inseparable.


The Good and Simple Life: Artist Colonies in Europe and America by Michael Jacobs – Hardcover: 176 pages; Harpercollins (Jun 1986)


Community of Creativity: A Century of Macdowell Colony Artists by P. Andrew Spahr, William Nathaniel Banks – Paperback: 103 pages: Currier Gallery of Art (Oct 1996)


My Time There: The Art Colonies of Santa Fe & Taos, New Mexico, 1956-2006 by R. H. Dick – Hardcover: 127 pages; St. Louis Mercantile Library; 1st edition (Aug 17, 2007)

Shortly before the turn of the twentieth century, in September 1898, artists Bert Phillips and Ernest Blumenschein discovered Taos, New Mexico, and became cofounders of one of America’s most famous art colonies. In a few short decades, a dazzling assortment of artists, writers, and intellectuals were to make their way into Taos and Santa Fe. From D. H. Lawrence to Georgia O’Keeffe to Edna St. Vincent Millay to the Russian, Nicolai Fechin, all seemed lured by its landscape and lifestyle. An American “vie de bohčme” had been established.

This memoir, using previously unpublished documents, letters, and photographs, explores the life of these two art colonies from the mid-1950s to the present. As an artist with paintbrush and camera, Missouri-born R. H. Dick gives both the scholar and general public a fascinating glimpse into the now vanishing world of the artists of his generation.

Impressionist Giverny: A Colony of Artists, 1885-1915 by Katherine M. Bourguignon – Paperback: 224 pages; Terra Foundation For American Art; 73rd edition (Apr 7, 2007)

Lured by the ineffable beauty represented in Claude Monet’s artwork and the promise of painting en plein air, artists from America and across Europe flocked to the French village of Giverny in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, transforming it from a sleepy hamlet to a colorful and thriving artists’ community. Impressionist Giverny: A Colony of Artists, 1885-1915 evokes the longevity of impressionism and highlights the role Giverny played in the movement’s ascendance, placing Giverny in the context of other European artists’ colonies of its era.

An American Art Colony: The Art and Artists of Ste. Genevieve, Missouri, 1930-1940 by R. H. Dick, Scott Kerr – Hardcover: 239 pages; St. Louis Mercantile Library; 1st edition (Aug 30, 2004)

From the 1930s to the early 1940s, Ste. Genevieve, Missouri was host to one of the most significant art colonies of its time. An American Art Colony is a historical and pictorial journey through the works of these magnificent painters. Their chosen subjects are not of the traditional bucolic landscape; instead they portray the human condition in terms both of political upheaval and of Depression era events.

Collectively, the authors present, through a series of biographical essays, an analysis of these painters’ lives, their art, and the world in which they lived. The artists are: Thomas Hart Benton, Sister Cassiana Marie, Fred E. Conway, Joseph James Jones, Miriam McKinnie, Joseph John Paul Meert, Bernard Peters, Jesse Beard Rickly, Aimee Goldstone Schweig, Martyl Schweig, E. Oscar Thalinger, Joseph Paul Vorst, and Matthew E. Ziegler.

American Art Colony by Paul H Mattingly – Hardcover: 280 pages; Fairleigh Dickinson University Press (Sep 1, 2019)

An American Art Colony demonstrates the social dimension of American art in the twentieth century, paying special attention to the role of fellow artists, nonartists and the historical context of art production. This book treats the art colony not as a static addendum to an artist’s profile but rather as an essential ingredient in artistic life.

Lawrence Park: Bronxville's Turn-of-the-Century Art Colony by Loretta Hoagland, Robert Marshall, Nardi R. Campion (Afterword), Brendan Gill (Foreword), Steven M. Bedford – Hardcover: 223 pages; Fordham University Press; 1st edition (Jan 1, 1993)

Lawrence Park is the story of Bronxville's turn-of-the-century art colony: the artists and their art, the houses they lived in and how the village of Bronxville grew up around them. In the years between 1890 and 1920, Lawrence Park was the home of two dozen nationally prominent painters, writers and architects. William Smedley painted distinguished society portraits. Will Low designed murals for government buildings and private mansions. Anna Winegar's Impressionist garden scenes illustrated horticultural books by Louise Beebe Wilder. Alice Wellington Rollins was a regular contributor to the day's literary magazines. Edmund Clarence Stedman was called the Poet of Wall Street. W. W. Kent and William A. Bates designed the Park's single-family "cottages" in a pleasing variety of turn-of-the-century styles.

More than 50 years after Lawrence Park ceased to exist as an art colony, it was listed on the National Register of Historic Places, in recognition of its historic and architectural significance. Eighty of the early houses remained, updated for modern living but proudly displaying ornamented brown-shingle facades, artist-studio windows and other period features. The narrow roads of the neighborhood also survived, winding up and down a hill that gave the Park its character and its common name, the Hilltop. Centuries-old oaks were still standing, markers of a time before William Lawrence arrived and of the sensitivity to nature with which he planned his development.

Americans in Paris 1850-1910: The Academy, the Salon, the Studio, and the Artists Colony by Barbara H. Weinberg, Gabriel P. Weisberg, George Hardy, Carolyn Hill (Foreword), Hardy George (Editor) – Paperback: 130 pages; Oklahoma City Art Museum (Feb 2004)

Americans in Paris 1850–1910 represents the profound French influence—both in style and subject—on American painters following the Civil War. There was a great deal of French art in America, mainly in the hands of urban industrialists and financiers eager to display their wealth. Meanwhile, American artists traveled to France to study under the masters, either at the École des Beaux-Arts or at one of the independent academies or studios. Paris proved immensely appealing as a locale in which artists were supported and valued, cultural life was rich, the surrounding countryside ispiring, and the cost of living relatively low. The landscapes and human figures favored by French painters offered a nostalgic appeal that American artists translated into a national vernacular.

Alternating beautiful color plates of some of the most influential artists from America and France—among them, James McNeill Whistler, Kenyon Cox, Mary Cassatt, Camille Cordot, and Honoré Daumier—with informative essays describing biographical, historical, and stylistic influences, this volume brings to life this pivotal and creatively vibrant moment in art history.

Foreign Artists and Communities in Modern Paris 1870-1914: Strangers in Paradise by Karen L. Carter, Susan Waller – Hardcover: 266 pages; Ashgate Publishing; New edition (May 28, 2015)

Foreign Artists and Communities in Modern Paris, 1870-1914 constitutes a major contribution to art history and to the broader field of modernist studies. The essays throw new light on major artists, including Gwen John, Medardo Rosso and Gino Severini, as well as understudied subjects, such as the evolving development of Catalan, Czech, Polish, American, and Japanese communities within metropolitan Paris.

New Hampshire's Cornish Colony by Fern K. Meyers, James B. Atkinson – Paperback: 128 pages; Arcadia Publishing (Apr 27, 2005)

New Hampshire’s Cornish Colony illustrates this distinguished American art colony. First settled in 1885 by colleagues of America’s Michelangelo, Augustus Saint-Gaudens, the Cornish Colony was a retreat for sculptors, painters, writers, and musicians. They were attracted to this peaceful valley nestled in the New Hampshire hills in the shadow of Vermont’s Mount Ascutney. Known as “the Athens of America,” the Cornish Colony was a lively, glamorous society during its heyday from 1885 to 1925. One outstanding member, the famous artist Maxfield Parrish, was called a “chickadee” because he spent the entire year in Cornish, not merely the summer. In New Hampshire’s Cornish Colony, discover a portrait of the colonists’ society and the fascinating people who contributed to America’s cultural legacy.

Colonies of American Impressionism: Cos Cob, Old Lyme, Shinnecock, and Laguna Beach by Deborah Epstein Solon, Will South, California Laguna Art Museum, Laguna Beach – Paperback; Laguna Art Museum (Dec 1, 1998)

As cultural theorists often enjoy pointing out, Southern California, with its motion picture, television, and aerospace industries, is the mecca of artificial culture. In this "here-today-gone-tomorrow" culture, our history has traditionally has been trivialized and discarded, leaving a great deal of the past for us to excavate. Laguna Beach and the Laguna Beach Art Association (the present day Laguna Art Museum) have stood at the center of another sort of culture in Southern California for more than eighty years.

From the turn of the century through the 1930's, Laguna Beach was home to the most significant artists' colony on the Pacific Coast. The Laguna Art Museum has been not only the focal point of this art colony but, for the last twenty years, instrumental in uncovering its history as well. Through exhibitions and catalogues such as William Wendt 1865-1946, Early Artists in Laguna Beach: The Impressionists, and California Light 1900-1930, the Museum has explored, and indeed developed, its rich local art history. Along with The Oakland Museum of California, it has been at the forefront of a trend among California museums to focus on regional history, including the Impressionist movement that was centered in Laguna Beach.

American Art Colonies, 1850-1930: A Historical Guide to America's Original Art Colonies and Their Artists by Steve Shipp – Hardcover: 192 pages; Greenwood Press (Dec 30, 1996)

These colonies ranged from Carmel-Monterey in California to Gloucester-Rockport in Massachusetts to Taos and Santa Fe in New Mexico. Some of the artists are famous today, such as Georgia O'Keeffe, while others were well-known at the time and added to the name recognition of their particular colonies.

Scholars, students, and anyone interested in American Art History will find valuable information on how the closeness of colonies can affect and influence artists. For most artists, interest in art colonies began in the mid-1800s in Europe, where they had gone to live, work, and study. On returning to America, they continued what they believed was a practice that benefited their personal maturity as professional artists--living in a major city such as New York during the winter and spending summers with other working artists in art colonies. The impact of those early artists can be seen in the paintings of many of today's artists.

Rural Artists' Colonies in Europe: 1870-1910 by Nina Lubbren – Paperback: 238 pages; Rutgers University Press (Aug 15, 2001)

Rural artists' colonies have been unjustly neglected by an art history preoccupied with the urban avant-garde. Yet these communities hatched some of the most exciting innovations of late nineteenth-century painting. Moreover, the practices and images of rural artists articulated central concerns of urban middle-class audiences, in particular the yearning for a nostalgia-filled life that was considered authentic, premodern, and immersed in nature. Paradoxically, it was precisely this perception that placed artists' colonies firmly within modernity, mainly through their contribution to an emergent mass tourism.

The Tenth Street Studio Building: Artist-Entrepreneur from the Hudson River School to the American Impressionists by Annette Blaugrund – Paperback: 143 pages; University of Washington Press (Jun 1997)

Just before the Civil War, the entrepreneur James B. Johnston (1822-1887) commissioned the beaux-arts architect Richard Morris Hunt (1827-1895) to design a building on Tenth Street in New York City for the sole purpose of housing artists' studios (some with living quarters) as well as a communal space for exhibitions.

This concept was entirely new to the city's artistic community, and when the building was finished in January 1858, it quickly achieved prominence among a wide circle of artists, architects, designers, art dealers, collectors, and critics. This book accompanied a 1997 exhibition by that same name at the Parrish Art Museum. The 150 objects in the exhibition include paintings, prints, and photographs representing the work of artists who lived and worked there as well as the building itself.


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