From early 20th-century landscape and still-life painter Mary Amanda Lewis comes two beautifully rendered oil on board paintings depicting the early life of hunters and gatherers. Presented in a diptych, one frame shows four men quietly stalking through the forest with bows and arrows while seeking out their prey. The other displays a group of women wading through field and forest with jugs balanced on top of their heads as they gather water and food from the local wild flora. Both paintings are presented in a beautiful art deco display with gold mat and housed behind glass in vintage bronze painted and carved wood frames. They make for a subtle yet elegant display.
Only one of these paintings is signed by the artist – M.A. Lewis appears in the bottom left corner of “The Hunters.”
Born in San Francisco, CA on Sept. 19, 1872, the daughter of Cornelia Edgerton and Franklin Jay Lewis. Raised in an atmosphere of culture, Mary’s parents were fine musicians. As a child she studied art and music with her father and in the 1890s studied painting with Wm F. Jackson at Sacramento’s Crocker Art Gallery. She was among Wm M. Chase’s summer students in Carmel in 1914. Coming from a long line of musicians, she was also a cellist who performed for five years at the Del Monte Hotel in Monterey. She died in Sacramento on Sept. 25, 1953 having spent most of her life there. An Impressionist, her works show the influence of Chase. Exh: Calif. State Fair, 1891-95; Del Monte Art Gallery, 1910, 1912; Sacramento Hotel, 1911 (with her father); Sacramento Art League, 1912; Golden Gate Park Museum, 1915; San Francisco Art Association, 1916, 1917; Kingsley Art Club, Crocker Art Gallery, 1930-47. In: Society of Calif. Pioneers; Crocker Museum (Sacramento).