Skip to main content

Arnold Rönnebeck and Louise Emerson Ronnebeck papers, 1884-2002

Biographical Note

Sculptor Arnold Rönnebeck (1885-1947) was part of the "Stieglitz circle" and settled in Denver where he served as director of the Denver Art Museum from 1926-1931. Rönnebeck married Louise Emerson (1901-1980) in 1926. Emerson was a painter and muralist who worked on New Deal mural commissions in Colorado and Wyoming.
Arnold Rönnebeck was born in Nassau, Germany and was a noted sculptor and lithographer. From 1905 to 1907, Rönnebeck studied architecture at the Royal Art School in Berlin and spent a year studying sculpture in Munich. In 1908, he moved to Paris where he furthered his studies in sculpture under Aristede Maillol and Emile Bourdelle. From 1914 to 1918, Rönnebeck served as an officer in the German Imperial Army during World War I. In 1923, he emigrated to the United States where he became part of the Stieglitz circle.
In 1925, Rönnebeck visited Mabel Dodge Luhan at her ranch in Taos, New Mexico, where he met his future wife, the painter Louise Emerson, born Mary Louise Harrington Emerson in 1901. After their marriage, the Rönnebecks lived in Denver where Arnold Rönnebeck worked as director of the Denver Art Museum and continued to execute commissioned works, including bas reliefs, portrait busts, and sculptures. He died in Denver, Colorado in 1947. Throughout the 1950s and 1960s, Louise Emerson Ronnebeck continued to receive commissions for frescoes and murals in Colorado and Bermuda and died in Denver, Colorado in 1980.