Theme/Style – Modernism, landscape, figurative art, portraits
Media – Oils, charcoal, etchings
Artistic Focus – Actively exhibiting in the Southern California art community throughout her career, Trude Hanscom was frequently singled out by critics for her assured hand and ability to convey both breadth and delicacy in her images. Though she was recognized as a master at combining drypoint and aquatint in her etchings, Hanscom was also an accomplished painter, and her figures and landscapes in oil similarly revealed her discerning eye for composition and detail.
Career Highlights –
- Born Gertrude Fandrich in 1890 in Oil City, Pennsylvania, “Trude” Hanscom grew up in Waterloo, New York and studied art at Syracuse University and Kline’s School of Graphic Arts at the Syracuse Museum of Fine Arts (now the Everson Museum of Art).
- After her marriage to Charles G. Hanscom, she settled in Southern California around 1930, first living in Los Angeles, where she continued her art training at the University of California, University of Southern California, and Otis Art Institute; and also at Scripps College in Claremont and with artist Sam Hyde Harris.
- In 1937, her prints, including scenes of Los Angeles’s Chinatown, were exhibited at the Charles W. Bowers Memorial Museum in Santa Ana.
- Her etchings were exhibited at the San Gabriel Artist’s Guild in 1938, receiving the praise of critic Arthur Millier in the Los Angeles Times; and in 1948 she exhibited at the first regional exhibition of Artists of the San Gabriel Valley at the Pasadena Art Institute.
- Hanscom’s aquatint etching Manana Village was exhibited in the California Building at the Golden Gate International Exposition in San Francisco in 1939, and was later purchased for the office of the Governor of California.
- Her work was included in the Pasadena Society of Artists exhibition at Long Beach’s Municipal Art Center in 1952, and her etching Homesteading was included in the group’s exhibition at the Pasadena Art Institute in 1954.
- In 1955 Hanscom was represented in the John Taylor Arms collection of contemporary American prints exhibited at The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. Her work is also in the collections of New York’s National Academy of Design and the Library of Congress, Washington, DC, among others.
- Hanscom was an active member of many artists’ groups, exhibiting with the Print Makers Society of California in the Los Angeles area and elsewhere throughout the 1950s, as well as with the Society of American Etchers; and in 1965 she received an Honorary Life Membership in the Society of American Graphic Artists.
- Hanscom was first vice president of Women Painters of the West, exhibiting with them often through the 1940s and 1950s, both at Los Angeles’s Ebell Club and at the Los Angeles County Museum, where in 1943 Hanscom was awarded the Julia Ellsworth Ford prize for best oil, and often took prizes for her etchings.
- Living in nearby Alhambra and then in Arcadia, and while fully engaged in her art career, Hanscom also taught printmaking both privately and at the Alhambra Evening School, the Whittier School of Adult Education, and in other communities in the vicinity.
- Though by 1971 Hanscom was no longer creating artworks, there was a solo show of her prints at the Austin Gallery in Montecito in 1971; and in their Scottsdale, Arizona location in 1977. Other exhibitions include the Royal Academy, London; California Art Club and Artist’s Fiesta, Los Angeles; Oakland Art Gallery; Laguna Beach Art Association; and American Artists Professional league, New York.
- Trude Hanscom passed away in Santa Barbara, California in 1975.