Annie Pierce, Alice Klauber at an Easel, 1901, watercolor, courtesy of the San Diego Historical Society. Pierce, 1877-1951, was a close friend and fellow painter of Alice Klauber. San Diego’s first native born woman artist and a protégé of Cora Timken Burnett she shared a studio with Miss Klauber in Spanish Village during the California International Exposition in 1935.

. . . During their stay in the Spanish capital, the class made side trips to Segovia and Toledo. In Segovia Miss Klauber sketched the ancient Roman aqueducts and in ‘the Jewell of the Spanish Crown’, Toledo, she noted a visit to the home of self exiled Greek artist, El Greco, who became recognized as a major Baroque Spanish painter. Today some specialists question the house as the residence of the artist. It was occupied by the Jewish treasurer for Carlos I, or Charles V, the Holy Roman Emperor from 1500 to 1558. Toledo was the site of several ancient civilizations and during the Renaissance its metal products, especially its swords, were sought by gentlemen throughout Europe. It was the site of the early Spanish See. Jewish tolerance is in evidence throughout the Catholic city, and in St. Thomas Cathedral a room was set aside for local Jewish ritual and worship. The house reputed to be the home of El Greco contains interesting Hebrew inscriptions in its architectural details. Miss Klauber would make repeated visits to this historical city. At this point her journals end. Subsequent references were made later while she was in Paris.

. . . When the class broke up at the end of August, she mentions visiting Henri and Skinner and discussing the McDowell Club late into the night on Friday, August 30. By September 9th she was on her way to France and arrived the next day. During her stay, she spent time with Gertrude Stein. A month later she boarded the Potsdam for home.

. . . In June 1913, the year Henri sailed with a class for Ireland, Miss Klauber was hopefully preparing a publication on the criticism of Henri as an outgrowth of the year of study with the artist in Spain. In a foreward of her 22 page manuscript she wrote:

. . . “This little record of notes from Mr. Henri’s talks was made last summer in Madrid. There was at the time the thought of their publication. It was the anxiety of fellow students to hear them, to copy them, and to make contributions to them that led to the making of this little book. I wish to thank Miss Clara Perry of Boston and Mr. Wayman Adams of Indianapolis for their kind help in preserving some of the criticism. Mr. Henri’s talks are always spontaneous and come with that lightning quality that must be caught at once in its original farce or lost forever.

. . . In asking his permission to bring out this very imperfect and incomplete record of truly inspiring criticism, I have added the request for a portrait to be used as the frontispiece as well as for reproductions of some of the works so that those students who have not yet met him may have this additional impress of a very great and powerful personality.

California, April, 1913”

. . . Henri seemed evasive in permitting its publication even though he had read the manuscript and half-heartedly given approval. A note by Miss Klauber reads: “In 1914 I read these notes to R. H., or he read them, after Margery and I retired to our rooms in La Jolla cottages - Miss Richmond’s and he read them aloud to us for a long time. He approved them but said that at his death Miss Ryerson would be bringing out her fuller collection of his criticism and that he did not think it would pay me to do so. I’ve thought of sometime consulting Wayman Adams and perhaps have his sketch produced in a column as a frontispiece to an experience to an inexpensive volume.” Earlier in a letter to Miss Klauber, Henri indicated that her friend and fellow artist Miss Perry, another member of the Spanish class was, also, preparing a manuscript. In an evaluation of the letters Miss Klauber had sent Henri, he drew attention to several points of contention. He objected to the title she proposed implying, in the artist’s estimation, that the words were his and not taken from criticism and conversations with others in the group on the Spanish trip. He objected to the idea of the Adam’s sketch she was planning to use on the cover because of its romanticism and because it was a memory piece. 31

Wayman Adams, Memory Sketch, oil, SDMA collection.

. . . His attempt to dissuade Miss Klauber from her intent to publish was, apparently, amicably successful. Although he had indicated that a publication about his life and art would not appear until after his death, Margery Ryerson’s classic The Art Spirit appeared in 1923, six years before the painter’s demise. Why the change of his earlier stated wishes? It raises an interesting question to be resolved.


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