Mary Townsend Mason (1886 - 1964)
House on the Bay, Bermuda, 1938
Pastel and graphite on paper on board
11 x 15 inches (sight)
Signed, inscribed, and dated at lower right in pencil: Mary Townsend Mason / Bermuda 1938
Mary Stuard Townsend Mason was born in Zanesville, Ohio. She was the daughter of Charles Edwin and Jessie F. (Easton) Townsend. She began her studies at the Maryland Institute in Baltimore, and then later went to Philadelphia to study at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts under William Merritt Chase and Hugh Breckenridge. While studying at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Mason took residence in Philadelphia, where she lived and painted until her death in 1964. She also painted on Monhegan Island in Maine, and Bermuda as did many artists of the period.
Mason was an active a member of The Philadelphia Art Alliance, the Fellowship of the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, the Plastic club of Philadelphia, the National Association of Women Painters and Sculptors in New York, the American Federation of Arts, and the Philadelphia Water Color club.
For her distinguished work, Mason was the recipient of many awards, receiving the Cresson Traveling Scholarship from the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts in 1909, a Gold Medal from the Plastic Club in 1921 and 1924, and the Mary Smith Prize from the Pennsylvania Academy Fine Arts in 1922, among others.
Her work has been exhibited widely, including the Buffalo Art Institute, the Women’s International Exhibition in St. Louis, the Chicago Galleries Association from 1925-1944, the National Academy of Design in New York, the Art Institute of Chicago, the Carnegie Institute in Pittsburgh and the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts.