Artists Anne Goldthwaite (1869–1944) and Kelly Fitzpatrick (1888–1953) both had roots in Montgomery and the surrounding area. Indeed, Fitzpatrick grew into a towering oak of local artistic achievement and started the art school that started the Montgomery Museum of Fine Arts. Goldthwaite was born here but grew up in Dallas, Texas, until her parents died and she returned to live with affluent relatives in 1884. She spent her teens and twenties in Montgomery before leaving to study art in New York City and in Paris, and later made frequent summer pilgrimages home to Montgomery. Goldthwaite was known in New York City as a leading painter of the South and Fitzpatrick was widely recognized as the kingpin of central Alabama’s artistic community.
Each artist depicted local people and places and many of those prints and paintings are in the collections of the MMFA. Goldthwaite’s etchings and Fitzpatrick’s watercolors depict the local landscape and its inhabitants in the first half of the twentieth century with the insights of an insider. Distinctive landmarks, common scenes, and common people are portrayed with a familial love of home that should resonate with modern-day Montgomerians, whether they are natives or newcomers.
Credit: Exhibition overview from museum website