Monday, November 15, 2010

Jennie Augusta Brownscombe: Colonial Revival

The First Thanksgiving
Jennie Augusta Brownscombe was born in 1850 in Honesdale, Pennsylvania and was raised in a log cabin. Her mother was descended from a pilgrim that arrived on the Mayflower. In 1868, she started teaching, simultaneously she designed calendars and greeting cards. She also created illustrations that appeared in Scribner’s and Harper’s magazines.

After moving to New York in 1871, Jennie Brownscombe studied at the National Academy of Design and the Cooper Institute School of Design for Women. She was one of the founders of the Art Students League of New York in 1875 and a teacher at the institution. She relocated to France in 1882; while there she studied with Henry Mosler at his studios, which were situated in Brittany and Paris. From 1886 to 1895 Brownscombe enjoyed her winters in Rome. Her work was exhibited in London and Rome.

She is renowned for historical genre or history painting in particular the colonial revival. The colonial revival encompassed ideas about preserving the historical heritage, as well as advancing democracy, a simple life, morality, the value of family, and good taste. Jennie Augusta Brownscombe painted scenes depicting colonial America and the Revolutionary War. 

The First Thanksgiving shown in this post is probably her most well known piece. She painted it in 1914; it was printed in Life magazine. This painting is currently housed at the Museum of Pilgrim Treasures in Plymouth, Massachusetts. The art work of Brownscombe is part of other major collectanea such as the Newark Museum.

She was a member of the National Arts Club of New York and the Municipal Art Society. She died in 1931.

Sunday Morning Styles Art Poster Print by Jennie Augusta Brownscombe, 32x24
Hope and Memories Giclee Poster Print by Jennie Augusta Brownscombe, 12x16

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