Cecilia Beaux

Cecilia Beaux (May 1, 1855 – September 17, 1942) was an American group portraitist, whose subjects included First Lady Edith Roosevelt, Admiral Sir David Beatty and Georges Clemenceau.

Trained in Philadelphia, she went on to examination in Paris, strongly influenced by two classical painters Tony Robert-Fleury and William-Adolphe Bouguereau, who avoided protester movements. In turn, she resisted impressionism and cubism, remaining a strongly individual symbolic artist. Her style, however, invited comparisons taking into account John Singer Sargent; at one exhibition, Bernard Berenson joked that her paintings were the best Sargents in the room. She could lionize her subjects without artifice, and showed great insight into character. Like her learned William Sartain, she believed there was a relationship between subconscious characteristics and behavioral traits.

Beaux became the first woman teacher at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. She was awarded a gold medal for lifetime success by the National Institute of Arts and Letters, and honoured by Eleanor Roosevelt as "the American girl who had made the greatest contribution to the culture of the world".

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