Edith Varian Cockroft, American (1881 - 1962)

A painter in the modernist styles of her era, Edith Cockcroft was heavily influenced by Henri Matisse with whom she studied in Paris in 1898. She was born in Brooklyn to wealthy parents and lived in Allendale, New Jersey.

In 1898, she went to France where she spent much time in the art colonies of Pont Aven and Concarneau. She exhibited in Paris at the Salon de la Society Nationale des Beaux Arts and the Salon d'Automme. "There is probably no truth to the often repeated story that she was a mistress to Paul Gaughin for, by 1898, he had traveled to the South Seas for the last time."

During the early part of the 20th Century, she traveled to England, judging by the fact that her 1908 entry in the National Academy of Design was a scene of St. Ives. She also exhibited at the Academy from 1910 to 1915, and at the Art Institute of Chicago, the International Art Union, the Salons of America, the Pennsylvania Academy and the Corcoran Gallery.

She married as a teen ager and lived with her husband in New York City and then in Sloatsburg, New York. Her husband, Charles Weyand, was a stock broker who lost much money during the Depression, so she supported them with the making of pottery, jewelry and with fabric designs.

In her later years, she traveled to Haiti and did many Haitian paintings. She died in Ramapo, New York. A fire in her studio had destroyed a large number of her paintings, and in the 1990s, a large number of her works were found, having been rescued from a trash compactor.

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