Theresa Bernstein 1890-2002

Beach Scene

  • 6 3/4 x 7 7/8 inches (17.1 x 20 cm)
  • Oil on board
  • Signed lower right: T. Bernstein '14
  • 1914

Why We Love It

Scenes of bathers such as this one were highly popular subjects among American Impressionist painters, and yet Theresa Bernstein has captured this vignette with a fresh and modern approach that transforms the picture into an almost abstract play of bright colors and forms, painted with rapid and fluid brushwork.

The Value

Theresa Bernstein’s long career allowed her to create a substantial number of paintings; however, like other women of the time she had to fight tirelessly for recognition from the male dominated art establishment. Renewed interest in American women artists, especially those of the early twentieth century, has strengthened her market.

Artist Background

1890: Born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; 1905: Traveled to Europe for the first time with her mother; 1907-11: Studied at the Philadelphia School of Design for Women (now Moore College of Art and Design) with Henry Snell, Eliot Daingerfield, and Daniel Garber among others; 1912: Moved to New York City with her parents and enrolled at the Art Students League, where she studied with William Merritt Chase. Traveled to Europe for the second time, where is she deeply affected by the modern art she sees there; 1913: Attended Armory Show, which in conjunction with her trips to Europe and her own personal interests compelled her to take modern American life as her principle subject; 1917-31: Exhibited with The Philadelphia Ten; 1919: Had first solo show at Milch Galleries in New York City. Married fellow artist William Meyerowitz; 1920 on: Regularly gave painting and etching classes along with her husband at their studios in New York CIty and Gloucester, Massachusetts. Exhibited widely in group and solo exhibitions; 2002: Died at the age of 112.