Elenore Abbott 1875 – 1935
Elenore Abbott was an American literary illustrator and landscape painter. She studied at the Philadelphia School of Design for Women, The Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Art, Academie des Beaux-Arts in Paris, and at the Drexel Institute in Philadelphia; the latter under the direction of famed author and illustrator, Howard Pyle. A pioneer in his field, Mr. Pyle created a style that combined Pre-Raphaelite, American Realism and Symbolism techniques, with a fantastical element rooted in his great love of history. Ms. Abbott is said to attribute the style of her own work to her time under Mr. Pyle’s direction.
As with Mr. Pyle’s, Elenore’s work was decidedly Art Nouveaux, comprising the organic shapes, and nature-inspired design elements inherent in that style. She often worked from photographs which then informed her oil paintings.
Ms. Abbott’s illustrations appeared in the Saturday Evening Post, Harper’s Magazine and Scribers’, however, her paintings are most recognized as being the illustrations for many classic fairy tales including Grimm’s Fairy Tales, Robinson Caruso, Treasure Island, and Swiss Family Robinson, among many others.
Today, in addition to the legacy of her literary illustrations, her work can be seen on display at the Brandywine River Museum in Pennsylvania, the Delaware Art Museum in Wilmington, Delaware and at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts in Philadelphia.