Date: American painter, printmaker, sculptor, 1885–1973
Biography: Hailing from an old Philadelphia family, Biddle completed his law degree at Harvard before studying art at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts and the Academie Julian in Paris. Biddle immersed himself in the expatriate experience, painting at Giverny and experimenting with an impressionist palette. He served in World War I and then traveled to Tahiti to recover. After a brief stay in New York, Biddle returned to Paris between the wars. This time he acquainted himself with the modernist crowd, meeting Gertrude and Leo Stein, Marsden Hartley, and James Joyce. In the 1930s, he returned to the United States, where he suggested a government-sponsored program for artists to his old school friend, Franklin D. Roosevelt. By this time Biddle had developed a social realist style that he used in his W.P.A. mural commissions.