Caroline Durieux (American, 1896 – 1989)
Printmaker, painter, satirist, innovator, social activist, Caroline Durieux was born in New Orleans and was already making sketches by the age of four. Her formal art training was at Newcomb College (1912-1917) and the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts (1918-1920).
Carl Zigrosser of the Philadelphia Museum of Art encouraged Durieux to try lithography. While living in Mexico, she learned lithography from Emilio Amero and later worked with Diego Rivera and the other Mexican masters. Her lithographs of the 1930s and 1940s rank as some of the finest satirical pieces ever made.
Durieux joined the art faculty at Newcomb College and taught from 1938-43. She also served as the Director for Louisiana’s WPA Art Project, which she administered without regard for the race of the participants within a totally segregated society. In 1943, she left New Orleans to teach at Louisiana State University where in the early 1950s she began experimental work on electron printmaking, demonstrating the peaceful use of atomic technology. She also successfully produced the first color cliché verres while simultaneously perfecting her technique for making electron prints.
Durieux’s work is in the Museum of Modern Art, the Chicago Art Institute, the National Gallery of Art, the New Orleans Museum of Art, the Library of Congress and the Philadelphia Museum of Art.