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Ross Braught And His "Waynesboro Landscape"

Friday, July 22, 2016

"Waynesboro Landscape" Post Office Mural by Ross E. Braught, Waynesboro MS

Here, the 1942 Ross E. Braught oil on canvas "Waynesboro Landscape" at the post office in Waynesboro, Mississippi (another of the Section projects). Ross Braught had attended the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts and in 1921 traveled to England and Italy after winning the Emlem Cresson Memorial Traveling Scholarship.

Thomas Hart Benton called Ross Braught either "the greatest living American draftsman" or "the greatest living American craftsman" which is quite the compliment (and from Benton, no less) no matter which quote is correct. It was Benton who replaced Braught at the Kansas City Art Institute in 1935.  While Braught works had been exhibited regularly in his younger years (including Corcoran, and Dudensing) he adopted a more secluded lifestyle in his last two decades, and was apparently reachable only via his post office box.

It was Hirschl and Adler Galleries who in 2000 put on the Braught's first major exhibit in 40 years, "Ross Braught (1898-1983): A Visual Diary" with over 45 pieces of his dated 1921-1960.

From David Cook Galleries:
Yet no one was able to track down the mysterious figure, and thus his life's work became the source of legend rather than of history. In a way this was fitting for an artist who portrayed ancient myths and saw their resonance in nature...

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