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Lucy Angeline Bacon (July 30, 1857 – October 17, 1932) was a Californian artist who studied in Paris under the famous Impressionist, Camille Pissarro. She is the only known Californian artist to have studied under any of the great French Impressionists.
Born in 1858 in Pitcairn, New York, Lucy Bacon attended art school at the Art Students League of New York and the National Academy of Design in New York City before leaving for France in 1892. In Paris she enrolled at the Académie Colarossi. However, she was dissatisfied with her studies there and asked expatriate American painter Mary Cassatt for advice. Ms. Cassatt introduced her to Camille Pissarro and Lucy wound up studying with him.
She then moved to Éragny and did some paintings that are clearly Impressionistic. By 1898, she was exhibiting Impressionist style paintings such as "A San Jose Garden" at the San Francisco Art Association. But her letters to her family indicate she had ongoing health problems that prevented her from painting full-time. Thinking that the climate of California would assuage her chronic illness, she moved to San Jose. Unmarried, she taught at Washburn School and painted from her home studio.
Her niece, Ruth, married Robert (Bob) Vickery, the son of William Kingston Vickery, who in 1891 and 1893 organized the first exhibitions of Impressionism in San Francisco (acquired, at least in part, through Lucy's connections, along with the help of Mrs. William H. Crocker.) The Vickery family owned Vickery, Atkins & Torrey, an important gallery in San Francisco in the 1890s. In 1897, Lucy Bacon received a painting of Fortifications à la Glacière painted by Paul Cézanne. Ms. Bacon bequeathed this painting to her nephew, Bruce Jeremiah Bacon (the son of her brother, Albert Bacon and Mary E. Bacon.) This painting has remained in the family and been handed down from generation to generation.
In 1905, while Lucy Bacon renounced her painting career and devoted herself to religion, possibly finding it eased her health problems, she continued to teach art. By 1909, she was living in San Francisco where she died in 1932.