Monday, February 17, 2014

Monday Inspiration: Alice M. Egan Hagan

Alice M Egan Hagan, Scaup Duck, 1897, (source)

Alice M.Egan Hagan, Redheaded Duck, 1897, (source)
I'd never heard of this artist before stumbling upon her works online, I really love them though, She was a china painter, though she worked in other mediums too- and in the 1930's became a studio potter- making the whole pot-(which is a different animal altogether than china painting). She worked as an artist her whole life into her 90's, and was quite influential.

In 1897, when she was 24, she painted these 12 game plates- as part of a set of china that was painted by Canadian women artists- (how I would love to see that set- next time I go to Scotland I guess...). Her plates were celebrated as some of the best, even though she'd only had a few lessons in china painting. I always wonder at the 'china painting' years of women's art- it seems so twee, or precious nowadays. I can't imagine a woman of this era painting on china - unless it was ironic, or some sort of activity that unskilled people do for fun- but in those days that was the medium for women to work in- seriously, seriously talented women- it seems ridiculous to me, but then, look at the plates- they are so beautiful, and they do really show what she was capable of, maybe it's not a disservice at all.

More info on Alice Hagan- here at the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia

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