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Agnes Tait


Fine watercolor and gouache by important New York and Santa Fe, New Mexico artist Agnes Tait (1894-1981). The following biography is from the Smithsonian, where Tait's famous "Skating in Central Park" now hangs:

Agnes Tait was born in New York City in 1894. She enrolled at the National Academy of Design in 1908, leaving in 1913 after the death of her mother. A year later she returned to the academy and took a life drawing class taught by Leon Kroll, whose emphasis on craftsmanship and balanced design was a major influence on Tait's own work. She finished her training at the academy in 1916. In 1927 she traveled to Paris and studied at the École des Beaux-Arts, where she learned lithography. The following year she returned to New York, where she had her first exhibition at the Dudensing Galleries. She traveled to Europe a second time in the early 1930s and returned via Haiti and Jamaica, which fostered an interest in tropical scenes. Her first solo exhibition, of portraits, took place in 1932 at the Ferargil Galleries. In early 1934 Tait was employed by the Public Works of Art Project, for which she executed what is considered her most famous work, Skating in Central Park. Throughout the 1930s Tait worked on small lithographic editions and mural work. In 1941 she and her husband moved to Santa Fe, New Mexico.

This 1928 portrait may have been exhibited in the 1932 Ferargil Galleries exhibit--the subject and style are consistent with the reviews (quotations taken from Lydia Pena's The Life and Times of Agnes Tait) of the show which stated that "Her light fresh color seems particularly adapted to children's portraits" (The Times) and "They display charm of color; too, and are especially sympathetic where children are concerned." (New York Herald Tribune).

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Agnes Tait Painting
Child with Sailboat
Watercolor and Gouache
Signed Middle Right
Dated 1928
19.75" x 13"
Timothy W. Grinder Fine Art....Holliston, MA 01746....508.728.2732