Florence Armes Hosmer, born in 1880, was a farmer's daughter determined to succeed as an artist. Acclaimed in the early part of the twentieth century, she has fallen almost entirely from view. This is the story of how Miss Hosmer, a feisty New England woman, painted her way through the new century and created well more than five hundred works.Helen Marie Casey won the fourFlorence Armes Hosmer, born in 1880, was a farmer's daughter determined to succeed as an artist. Acclaimed in the early part of the twentieth century, she has fallen almost entirely from view. This is the story of how Miss Hosmer, a feisty New England woman, painted her way through the new century and created well more than five hundred works.Helen Marie Casey won the fourteenth National Poet Hunt in 2009. Helen's published two poetry chapbooks, Fragrance Upon His Lips, a series of poems about Joan of Arc, and Inconsiderate Madness, which won the 2005 Black River Chapbook Competition....
|Title||:||My Dear Girl: The Art of Florence Hosmer|
|Number of Pages||:||275 Pages|
|Status||:||Available For Download|
|Last checked||:||21 Minutes ago!|
My Dear Girl: The Art of Florence Hosmer Reviews
I read this because a bookgroup at my library invited me to the meeting at which they will discuss it. The author will be in attendance, and it will take place in the former home of the subject. For those of you who aren't from Sudbury MA, Florence Hosmer was, in her time, a well-known and well-thought-of artist who is now almost completely forgotten. She left her house (which dates back to the 1790s) to the town upon her death in 1978, and it's maintained by the town Historical Commission, which has also collected nearly 500 of her paintings. Unfortunately, this is something of a biography without a center. In spite of Miss Hosmer's oft-mentioned pack-rack tendencies, her own letters have been lost to time. She never kept a journal or even a record of her paintings. So there's a lot of speculation about how she "no doubt" responded to things with her usual wit and grace, but who really knows?
'Every genuine work of art has as much reason for being as the earth and sun.' Emerson,Helen Marie Casey is a fine port and it is her insertion of her own asides placed judiciously throughout this book that makes the book so very much worth reading. MY DEAR GIRL: THE ART OF FLORENCE HOSMER is a memoir, a biography, and a call to attention to the many fine artists whose time lasts only briefly, never quite making it into the pantheon of 'Art History Figures'. That Casey should proffer such generous research and gift of time to writing about an artist about whom few know even the name is a gift to not only the memory of Florence Hosmer, but to the memories of all artists who for some reason are ghosts of the past only.Florence Hosmer, born in 1880 in Woodstock, Connecticut, was a painter, teacher, and lecturer who did numerous portraits of prominent people. She studied at the Massachusetts School of Art and the Boston Museum School and with Joseph De Camp, Charles Woodbury, Albert Munsell, and Anson Kent Cross. She exhibited at the Copley Society and the Boston Art Club, and her work is at the Sudbury Historical Society and the Hosmer Museum in Sudbury. In her will, she left her home and many paintings to the town of Sudbury. 'Hosmer lived through two world wars, registered to vote as soon as women obtained the right to vote, and made her way as an independent woman and artist when independent women did not have an altogether easy time of it.' What Casey has provided us in this very well sculpted book is the conundrum that women artists, accepted as fine artists during the early part of the 20th century failed to be known past their prime. She died in Sudbury, Massachusetts in 1978.Casey's writing style places her in the ranks of fine biographers. For example: 'How far can training alone take the woman who longs to be an artist? It is reasonable to ask: Did Florence Hosmer have the tough hide she would need when criticism came? The indomitable spirit that would keep her in the race no matter the outcome? It wouldn't ever be enough to be competent or even very talented if one couldn't promote her own work. Could she make it if she had no permanent manager, no agent, no social privilege an, to be pragmatic, no husband or lover to open any of the doors closed to her in the arts world then dominated by men? What would she so if she couldn't sell her work? If she had no exhibits? If clients tried to take advantage of her by refusing to pay what they owed her?'Through presenting Hosmer's letters and memorabilia (she was a bona fide pack rat!) and communications of the time, Casey presents a very rich picture of the life of Florence Hosmer. Included in the book are a few reproductions of her art - self portraits and portraits of others. From an art criticism standpoint the works are competent but hardly in the same class as Marry Cassatt, Georgia O'Keefe or Grandma Moses. But that is hardly Casey's point. Her message is a request to note the many artists of talent whose lives go unremembered. Helen Marie Casey beautiful little book begs the question 'Why?' Grady Harp
My four star rating is perhaps a little generous but I met the author, Helen Marie Casey, at a Massachusetts Center for the Book event last year and liked her very much. In addition, My Dear Girl shines a light on a largely forgotten painter, Florence Armes Hosmer (1880-1978). In spite of her long life and unswerving commitment to her art, the bulk of her work has been lost over the years because, surprising for a packrat, she kept no records of her finished paintings nor records of the buyers.Hosmer also did not keep a diary or copies of her letters. Ms. Casey does a as well as anyone could to surmount this obstacle to biography and is successful because of the packrat mentality already noted. The artist kept vast amounts of correspondence, bills, sketches, flyers and many scraps of paper, all a jumble in her home to this day. Although we cannot read Hosmer's thoughts and can only infer her character and personality from notes and letters sent to her, Ms. Casey researched her subject well. She provides documentary evidence of Florence's life: Hosmer family history, the chronology of the artist's studies, teachers and activities, the places she worked or visited. No one is more aware of Florence's elusive voice than the author, who must receive credit for even attempting this project.My Dear Girl contains small reproductions of Hosmer's paintings and I'll leave readers to judge their quality for themselves. There are hints in her paintings that she was aware of the Impressionists, she was an excellent colorist but we do not know what she read or who influenced her outside of her immediate surroundings. I like a few of the paintings very much and look forward to a visit to Sudbury, MA and Hosmer House To end I must add this is an easily readable book - interesting, well researched and well written.