Arts Everyday Living: Gift from a Summer Garden—Morning Glories on a Winter’s Day

Hannah Brown Skeele, Vase of Morning Glories, n.d., oil on wood, Gift of William and Abigail Gerdts, National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.



Title: Vase of Morning Glories, n.d.

Artist: Hannah Brown Skeele, (1829-1901)


Have you heard of American artist Hannah Brown Skeele?  She may not have the fame of  Monet, Van Gogh, or Picasso, yet doesn’t Vase of Morning Glories deserve our attention? For each flower seems to breathe with life, blooming early on a summer morn. Vibrant in color–purple, pink and white–they reach out to us, enhanced by the fresh green of their heart shaped leaves. Probably picked quickly by Skeele’s expert hands from her garden shortly before, in order to prevent them from closing up as the sunshine intensified. Then transferring them to the exquisite porcelain vase inside, so she could immortalize what otherwise would have been their short-lived glory.

Few biographical details are available. Born in Kennebunkport, Maine in 1829, Skeele painted professionally in St. Louis, Missouri, later returning to her native state where she died in 1901.









In the public domain, courtesy of the National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.

The National Gallery of Art does not endorse or approve use of the above image or acny of the material on this website. Nor has the National Gallery of Art participated in any projects utilizing the said image.


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