Skip to main content

Kenyon and Louise Cox papers, 1876-1977

Biographical Note

Kenyon Cox was a prominent American painter, lecturer, and art critic. He was born in 1856, in Warren, Ohio, and he studied painting at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts and in Paris, where he befriended artist Augustus Saint-Gaudens. Cox returned to the United States and made a living illustrating magazines and books, and teaching at the Art Students League in New York. In 1892 he married his student Louise Howland King, born in San Francisco in 1865. Together they became prominent painters and were responsible for the murals that decorated the Liberal Arts Building at the 1893 Columbian Exposition in Chicago. During his career, Cox contributed articles and essays on art subjects to various magazines. He was a member of the Society of American Artists, the National Academy of Design, and the American Academy of Arts and Letters. Kenyon Cox died in 1919 and Louise in 1945. Their son, Allyn, born in 1896, became a successful muralist.