as the "Dean Of Northwest Women Painters", Myra Albert
Wiggins was one of the earliest professional artists in the Northwest
to achieve an international reputation.
Born in Salem, Oregon, she began her study of art at the age of
sixteen. Sharing an interest in photography with her brother,
they jointly purchased a camera and equipment. She continued to
develop her expression in this medium even after her brother's
interest quickly waned.
1891 she went to New York to study at the Art Students League
with such prominent American masters as William Merrit Chase,
John Twachtman and Willard Metcalf.
While developing her painting abilities, Wiggins continued to
exhibit her photography, winning many awards in important exhibitions
in the U.S. and in Europe.
1900, she had the first of two one-woman exhibitions of her photography
at the Chicago Art Institute and was admitted into the Photo-Secession
group which was headed by Alfred Stieglitz. Wiggins exhibited
three of her photographs in the Secessionists' important exhibition
at the Albright Gallery in Buffalo, N.Y. in 1910. By this time,
she had won over fifty major international awards for her achievements
Wiggins had moved to Washington State in 1907 and settled in Toppenish
where she continued to work until her permanent move to Seattle
1930, Wiggins co-founded the Women Painters Of Washington, one
of the city's oldest existing art organizations and became a vital
force in most of the region's arts activities.
work is in the permanent collections of the Portland Art Museum,
the Getty Museum, the National Gallery of American Art, Smithsonian
Institution and many others.
Portrait, c. 1920, Platinum Photograph
Edge of the Cliff, c 1902, Platinum Photograph
more information about Myra Wiggins, please read "Witch of
Kodakery" by Carole Glauber, WASU Press
& the artist's estate.
Do not reproduce text
or images without
from David Martin