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Philip Evergood papers, 1890-1971

Biographical Note

Painter and printmaker Philip Evergood (1901-1973) lived and worked in New York City and Bridgewater, Connecticut and was known as an expressionist and social realist who incorporated elements of the fantastic into his works. A native New Yorker, Evergood's father, Miles Blashki, was a Polish-Australian artist, and his mother, Flora Jane Perry, was English. At his mother's insistence, Evergood attended boarding schools in England and graduated from Eton in 1919. He left Cambridge University to pursue art studies at London's Slade School of Fine Arts and returned to America in 1923 to study with George Luks at the Art Students League.
In 1927, Evergood held his first one man show at New York's Dudensing Gallery and continued to travel back and forth between France, Spain, and America throughout the 1920s. In 1931, he married dancer and actress Julia Cross and found work as a muralist and painter for the WPA Federal Arts Project in the early 1930s. From 1937-1938, he served as president of the New York Artists Union and, along with other social realist painters, joined Herman Baron's stable at the ACA (American Contemporary Art) Gallery, where he exhibited several one man shows during the late 1930s and 1940s.
During the 1940s and 1950s, Evergood was a popular lecturer and taught at art schools, including the Skowhegan School, and began producing large scale lithographs and etchings along with his paintings. While working as a picture framer for additional income, he met the art collector Joseph Hirshhorn who would purchase 10 artworks at their first meeting and become a life long patron. He continued to exhibit his work at the ACA Gallery and the annual contemporary shows of major museums, such as the Carnegie Institute and the Art Institute of Chicago. Evergood exhibited in over 35 exhibitions, including a retrospective at the Whitney Museum in 1960, and died in a house fire in Bridgewater in 1973.