Frank Weston Benson American (1862-1951
Frank Weston Benson was born in Salem, Massachusetts. He studied at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, and then at l'Académie Julian, in Paris, with Boulanger and Lefebvre. Benson was a teacher throughout his career, first in Portland, Maine, then in his Boston studio, and later at the Boston Museum of Fine Arts. Benson was accomplished in a variety of media including watercolor, pastel, aquatint and engraving and was a founding member of "The Ten," a group of ten well known American Impressionist painters from New York and Boston who exhibited together for nearly twenty years. Like his French counterparts, Benson frequently painted outdoors to capture the dynamic character of light. In the late 1890s the artist accepted a prestigious commission to work on the decoration of the Library of Congress and completed murals of Fours Seasons and Three Graces for the project. The Impressionist style, pioneered by Monet in France, enjoyed tremendous popularity with the American public and as a result, Benson attained a large measure of success as an artist during his lifetime. Frank Weston Benson was one of the most successful and prolific artists of his generation. He died in his home in Salem on November 15, 1951.