Ernest Lawson

Ernest Lawson
American, 1873 – 1939
White Woods, 1903
Oil on canvas
25 ¼ H. x 30 ¼ W. inches
Signed lower left: E. Lawson / 03

Artist Description

Ernest Lawson worked as a draftsman for an engineering firm in Mexico City before taking art courses in Cos Cob, Connecticut. His teacher, John Twachtman, encouraged him to study in Paris, and Lawson ended up living with the novelist Somerset Maugham, who modeled the tormented artist in Of Human Bondage on his roommate. Lawson returned to New York, where his paintings of docks, constructions sites, Coney Island, and the Hudson River garnered good reviews. Despite his critical success, Lawson was lonely and drank heavily. He eventually moved away from New York, first to Colorado Springs, where he painted and taught for two years, and later to South Florida. Toward the end of his life, rheumatoid arthritis slowed his work, and in 1939 he was found dead on the beach in Miami, having suffered a heart attack during his morning walk. (Anderson, Ernest Lawson Retrospective1976)

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