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Hattie Saussy: The Rediscovery of an Artist
October 21, 2017 - January 21, 2018
Born in Savannah in 1890, Saussy began making art at an early age under the tutelage of Mrs. G. A. Wilkins and her daughter Emma Cheves Wilkins, as well as Lila Cabaniss. She attended Mary Baldwin Seminary (now Mary Baldwin College) in Virginia but left after only a year to pursue focused studies at the New York School of Fine and Applied Art (now the Parsons School of Design), the National Academy of Design School (now the National Academy School), and the Art Students League in New York City. In 1913 she left for Europe, where she studied and traveled until the outbreak of World War I forced her to return home.
In 1921, after a brief stint working in Washington, D.C., and teaching at the Chatham Episcopal Institute (now Chatham Hall) in Virginia, she returned to Savannah, where she lived for the rest of her life. A force in the city’s artistic community, she was a successful painter of portraits, genre scenes, and landscapes. Her emphasis on the momentary effects of color and light identifies her as one of the South’s leading impressionists. Saussy died in Savannah in 1978 at the age of eighty-seven. The exhibition was organized by curator John Daniel Tilford for the Oglethorpe University Museum of Art, Atlanta, Georgia.