Born in Chicago in November 1916 to an artistic family, Anne Harvey was destined to be an artist. She moved to Paris with her mother and aunt during the Great Depression in an attempt to stretch their small inheritance. It was in Paris where she truly immersed herself in the world of art, both as a creator and as a participant in the rich artistic and cultural milieu of the time.
Harvey's education in art began with private lessons under the renowned artists Fernand Léger and Constantin Brancusi. She was introduced to Brancusi by her aunt, Katherine Dudley, who was deeply connected to the artistic circles in Paris. Through her aunt's social network, Harvey was able to meet and befriend some of the most celebrated artists of the era, including Survage, Léger, Brancusi, Marcoussis, Matisse, and Picasso. Notably, Jules Pascin drew her portrait in 1929, and she was photographed by both Brancusi and Walker Evans.
Despite her impressive social circle, Harvey did not have any exhibitions before Peggy Guggenheim’s Exhibition by 31 Women; it was only after this groundbreaking event that she began to gain recognition for her work. The Exhibition by 31 Women featured a piece titled "Still Life" (1942).
Throughout her life, Harvey was involved in several romantic relationships. One of her most significant affairs was with Georg Duthuit, who was married to Marguerite Matisse at the time. Their relationship lasted for many years, and Harvey painted a portrait of Duthuit that remains in the Estate's Collection as of 2021. It is said that she "died of a broken heart" in 1967, as she rarely left her apartment to avoid missing Duthuit if he visited. Her death, caused by carbon monoxide asphyxiation, is still shrouded in mystery, as it remains unknown whether or not it was accidental.
Anne Harvey's nephew, Steven Harvey, now manages her estate and has opened a gallery on the Lower East Side. He continues to share her artistic legacy with the world, ensuring that her work is remembered and appreciated. Although she may not have been well-known in the 1930s, Harvey's life and work in the art world left an indelible mark, particularly through her participation in the Exhibition by 31 Women.
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