To commemorate Women’s History Month, The Phillips Collection will be celebrating female and female identifying artists during the month of March.
Helen Torr (b. 1886, Pennsylvania; d. 1967, New York) was an American Modernist painter. She sometimes was referred to as “reds” because of her flaming red auburn hair.
Torr’s style was completely, or nearly completely, abstract, though she sometimes departed from this style when creating landscape or still life works, shifting between representation and abstraction. She is noted to have been heavily influenced by her friends Marsden Hartley and Georgia O’Keeffe.
Torr’s works were exhibited publicly only twice during her life. After her husband, Arthur Dove, passed away, she never resumed painting and wished her artworks be destroyed. However, her sister donated most of her work to the Heckscher Museum, which organized a show of her work in 1972. That exhibition was followed in 1980 with a solo show at the Graham Gallery. You can find her work here at The Phillips Collection, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.
By JamiLee Hoglind, a graduating Senior at Galludet University and a Phillips Marketing and Communications intern