In Focus

Emma S. Bellows letter to Jerry Bywaters (July 25, 1956)

Woodstock, New York

July 25th 1956

The Dallas Museum of Fine Arts

Dallas 26, Texas

Dear Mr. Bywaters,

At the request of Gordon Allison I am sending you a bit of information concerning the George Bellows painting “Emma in Purple Dress.” It is as follows.

“Emma in Purple Dress” 51 x 63

It is recorded in George Bellows private catagloue book C- page 7.

Painted in George Bellows summer studio Woodstock, NY.

He says, “Completed Oct. 1923, after painting 3 years on this canvas.”

It has been exhibited in



Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York City, in the “George Bellows Memorial Exhibition” 1925



Allison Gallery, 32 East 57th Street, Ny, NY 1955

I remember the terrific struggle George had with the head. He scraped it out again and again. Finally one day he said, “get up on the model stand and I’ll have another try.” I said, “Well—you had better make it snappy. This dress will not hold out much longer.” That afternoon everything worked together for good—The head just flew on and the painting was finished. Several of his artist friends came in to see it and were most enthusiastic.

I believe it is now considered his finest portrait of me. I am delighted that the Dallas Museum has added this important Bellows to its growing collection and I hope to give myself the pleasure of coming down to see it in the near future.

For the interest and enthusiasm you and your Board of Trustees have shown, I am most appreciative.

Thanking you,

I am as ever,

Emma S. Bellows

(Mrs. George Bellows)