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Jerome Myers
Date: American painter and printmaker, 1867–1940
Biography: Myers spent most of his career depicting everyday life in New York. Born in Petersburg, Virginia, Myers spent his youth in Philadelphia and Baltimore, before moving to New York to work as a scene painter. In 1887 he began to take evening art classes at Cooper Union, and the following year he started to study at the Art Students League. In the 1890s, he worked for Moss Engraving Company and the Tribune while studying art and painting in the evenings. By 1903 he was exhibiting at Macbeth Gallery and in juried and invitational exhibitions at the Society of American Artists, the National Arts Club, the Municipal Art Society and the Lotus Club. At the League and in exhibitions, Myers crossed paths with John Sloan, Robert Henri, and other members of The Eight. At the Chase School, where Henri taught, Myers met his wife, a talented sculptor and the school's assistant director. They married in 1905 and their daughter Virginia was born the following year. For a time, the Myers' studio/apartment was on West 23rd Street across from Sloan. Myers had his first solo exhibition at Macbeth Gallery in January 1908, just before the exhibition of The Eight. Myers exhibited in the 1910 Independents Exhibition and was involved with planning for the Armory Show. In 1912 the Metropolitan Museum of Art purchased his painting The Mission Tent, and the Myers family was able to move into the Carnegie Hall building, where he would maintain a studio for the remainder of his life. After the Armory Show, where he and his wife Ethel Myers both exhibited, Myers traveled with his family to London and Paris. In 1915 Myers took up etching. In the teens Myers exhibited widely, and his works were purchased by private collectors Arthur Egner, John Quinn, Duncan Phillips, and Julia Peck. In the twenties and thirties, Myers won significant awards and his work entered more museum collections. In 1940 he wrote his autobiography, Artist in Manhattan, which was published by the American Artists Group. The Delaware Art Museum owns the Jerome Myers Papers, donated by his grandson, Barry Downes.