Friday, March 26, 2010

March is Women's History Month

Anna Mary Robertson Moses

 (September 7, 1860 – December 13, 1961),

Anna Robertson,
 is better known as "Grandma Moses".
 She was a renowned American folk artist.
She is most often cited as an example of
an individual successfully beginning a
career in the arts at an advanced age.

She was strong willed!

She didn't  allow her
age to interfere with
her desire to paint.

She was born in Greenwich,  New York and
lived there until at age 27, when she married
her husband, Thomas S. Moses, and
 moved to rural Virginia with him to farm.
They had 10 children but 5 died at birth.

She had a very
 strong positive attitude.

She didn't allow the
sadness of death to destroy
her life or her family.

Moses began painting in her seventies after
abandoning a career in embroidery because
 of arthritis. Louis J. Caldor, a collector,
discovered her paintings in a Hoosick Falls,
New York drugstore window in 1938.

She had the Courage
to move back to New York
after her husband died
and began to paint.

 In 1939, an art dealer, Otto Kallir, exhibited
some of her work in his Galerie Saint-Etienne
 in New York.

She was Disciplined!

She didn't  allow her
arthritis to become an
 excuse not to paint!

This brought her to the attention of
 collectors all over the world, and her
 paintings became highly sought after. She
 went on to exhibit her work throughout
Europe and in Japan, where her work was
particularly well received. She continued her
prolific output of paintings, the demand for
which never diminished during her lifetime.

She had Stamina!

She did not allow
her age to stop her
from traveling to
Europe and Japan to 
exhibit her art work. 

Grandma Moses painted mostly scenes of rural life.
 Many of her early paintings in the realist style
 were given to family members as thank-you gifts
 after her visits. She painted well over 3600
paintings  in 3decades. Before her fame, she
would charge $2 for a small painting and
$3 for a large one.

Important Works:

Sugaring Off, 1943
Wash Day, 1945
A Beautiful World, 1948
The Thunderstorm, 1948
The Old Checkered House in Winter, 1950

She had the
Determination to see her
dreams come true!

President Harry S. Truman presented her with the
Women's National Press Club trophy Award
 for outstanding accomplishment in art in 1949.

She possessed Humility!

In 1951 she appeared on See It Now,
a television program hosted by Edward R. Murrow.

She embraced her Creativity!

In 1952 she published her autobiography and titled it
Grandma Moses: My Life's History.

She possessed an amazing
 amount of Vitality!

On her 100th birthday in 1960, New York
Governor Nelson Rockefeller proclaimed the
 day "Grandma Moses Day" in her honor.

She had no Regrets!

In November 2006, her work
 Sugaring Off (1943), became
her highest selling work at
US $1.2 million. The work was
a clear example of the simple
rural scenes she became known for.

She left behind an example
 to never allow age or
anything else come between
 what you desire to do!

A 1942 piece,
The Old Checkered House,1862
was appraised at the
Memphis 2004 Antiques Roadshow.
Originally purchased in the 1940s for
under $10, the piece was assigned
an insurance value of $60,000
 by the appraiser, Alan Fausel.

Another of her paintings,
Fourth of July, was given by Otto Kallir
to the White House and still hangs there today.

She made every day
of her life count!

The character Granny on the popular 1960s rural
comedy television series "The Beverly Hillbillies"
 was named Daisy Moses as an homage to
Grandma Moses, who died shortly before
 the series began.

She realized the benefit
 of true friendship was
to be a true friend.

Norman Rockwell, who, for a time,
 lived inArlington, Vermont, was a friend of
Grandma Moseswho lived in nearby
Eagle Bridge, New York.
Grandma Moses also appears on the far
leftedge in the Norman Rockwell painting
"Christmas Homecoming",
which was printed on the cover of the
Saturday Evening Post of  December 25, 1948. 

There is probably no other figure in Art History
who needs less analysis than Grandma Moses.

She was exactly who
 she seemed to be.


Life is what we make it,
always has been, always will be.

If I didn't start painting,
I would have raised chickens.

I paint from the top down.
From the sky, then the mountains,
then the hills, then the houses,
 then the cattle, and then the people.

I look back on my life like a good day's work;
it was done and I am satisfied with it.

A primitive artist is an amateur whose work sells.

A strange thing is memory, and hope;
 one looks backward, and the other forward;
one is of today, the other of tomorrow.
Memory is history recorded in our brain,
memory is a painter, it paints pictures
of the past and of the day.

Painting's not important.
The important thing is keeping busy.

1 image in public domain was used in this post.
The link is here:

***There were no images of Grandma Moses'
work  in public domain. Just Google her
name to find links to see her art work.

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