Fred N. Vance was born in Crawfordville, Indiana in 1880. He studied at the Art Institute of Chicago and the Art Academy of Chicago, in Paris at the Academy Julian, and for a time with Max Bohn at Etaples, France.
Returning to Indiana, Fred Vance worked with his father, George Vance, as a mural decorator. Among the most important pieces of his work was the decoration of the grill room at the U.S. Grant Hotel of San Diego, California. He also had charge of an art school in Terre Haute, Indiana in 1912. There he married Mary Sabiston. They then moved to Indianapolis from Crawsfordville.
During WWI Vance saw service in France and Italy and acted as interpreter for the Y.M.C.A department. His work there keep him for some time after the armistice. Vance was the president of the Alliance Francaise in Indianapolis in l924. He also served the Indiana Artists Club as secretary during the presidency of Randolph L. Coats. At the time of his death, he was a member of the board of directors of the Indiana Artists Club.
Fred N. Vance was represented in the Lieber exhibitions of the Brown County group. Two of his paintings are now in the traveling exhibit of Brown county paintings from the 1927 Hoosier Salon in Chicago.
Many of these artists were either native to Indiana or lived, worked, and studied around the Midwest in the early 20th century, specifically in Indiana locales such as Indianapolis, Brown County, Muncie, Nashville, Portland, Richmond, South Bend, and southern Indiana.
Several artists studied or were integral figures at Indiana institutes such as the Fort Wayne Art School, Muncie Art School, Indiana School of Art, and the Richmond School. Others were associated with entities such as the Brown County Art Colony, Hoosier Group, Hoosier Salon, and the Richmond Art Museum. The artwork we are seeking includes impressionist, landscape, oil, still life, and watercolor paintings from these Indiana artists.
Brown County Art Colony
The Brown County Art Colony was formed in the early 1900s by artists who were attracted by the undisturbed picturesque landscape known as Peaceful Valley. T.C. Steele was the first to become a resident of the county when he purchased 200 acres near Belmont. Adolph Shulz is considered to be the founder of the Brown County Art Colony. He began visiting Brown County in 1908 and in 1917 became a permanent resident. Both Adolph Shulz and T.C. Steele influenced other artists and many began building cabins and moving to the area.
Will Vawter and Gustave Baumann were among the first to make Brown County their home. Other artists such as Charles Dahlgreen, Lucie Hartrath, and L.O. Griffith came from Chicago and by the early 1930s there were at least eighteen artists with permanent homes in Brown County.
Artists such as C. Curry Bohm, Edward K. Williams, Ada Walter Shulz, Carl Graf, V.J. Cariani, Gustav Baumann, Will Vawter, Dale Bessire, Georges LaChance, Marie Goth, Leota Loop, Adam Emory Albright, Olive Rush, and Alexis Fournier flourished and created the Brown County Art Colony nearly 100 years ago.
- Letsinger-Miller, Lyn. The Artists of Brown County. Bloomington and Indianapolis: Indiana University Press, 1994.
- Nesbit, M. Joanne, ed., Barbara Judd, comp. Those Brown County Artists: The Ones Who Came the Ones Who Stayed the Ones Who Moved On. Nashville: Nana’s Book, 1993.
Sell Us Your Indiana Art
If you are interested in selling us your Indiana art, please contact us online, give us a call or SMS at 812-327-0401.