Grandma Moses ( 1860-1961)
born September 7, 1860, Greenwich, New York, U.S.
died December 13, 1961, Hoosick Falls
Original name Anna Mary Robertson American folk painter who was internationally popular for her naive documentation of rural life in the United States in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Anna Robertson had only sporadic periods of schooling during her childhood. At age 12 she left her parents' farm and worked as a hired girl until she married
Anna Mary Robertson Moses became known to the world as Grandma Moses, one of America's most noted folk artists. After spending much of her life in nearby Eagle Bridge, New York, Moses began painting in her seventies when the responsibilities she had as a busy farm wife no longer occupied her time. Moses' artistic rise began when a New York City collector saw her paintings in the window of a local drug store. In 1940, her one-woman show at the Galerie St. Etienne in New York City led to international acclaim. Her paintings of rural American landscapes and country ways were embraced by a rapidly changing and technological world.
By the time of her death in 1961, Moses had created over 1500 works of art. The Bennington Museum holds the largest public collection of Moses paintings in the country, as well as "yarn paintings", art supplies, and the 18th-century tilt-top table Moses painted with rustic scenes and used as her easel.
Attended by Grandma Moses and other members of her family in Eagle Bridge, New York, the Grandma Moses Schoolhouse was moved to the grounds of the Bennington Museum in 1972. Today it houses exhibitions recording the life and achievements of the artist. Artifacts and documents discuss her life, the world-wide fame she gained, and the ways in which her paintings were reproduced. Visitors can watch Moses paint and hear her discuss her extraordinary life by viewing a 1955 Edward R. Murrow interview with Moses for his television show.