Hovsep Pushman (1877–1966)
Known for his mystical still-lifes, Hovsep Pushman had a celebrated career in the beginning of the twentieth century. Born in Armenia, Pushman received a scholarship to attend the Constantinople Academy of Art when he was only eleven years-old. From there, his career took him from the Art Institute of Chicago to China, where he acquired a deep-seated interest in Asian art, to Paris, where he trained at the École des Beaux-Arts and won medals from the Salon des Artistes Français. He eventually settled in New York, opening his own studio in 1921 and earning praise from critics and collectors. Inspired by his Eastern heritage and experience of Chinese art, Pushman created still-life paintings of oriental objects—vases, idols, and tapestries—lit by a mysterious glow. Exquisitely-detailed and darkly-beautiful, the paintings also carried symbolic, allegorical meanings. Pushman exhibited at the Paris Salon, the National Academy of Design, the Corcoran Gallery Biennials, the Salmagundi Club, and the California Art Club. His 1932 solo show at Grand Central Art Galleries sold out by the end of the first day. His work may now be found at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, the Butler Institute of American Art, the San Diego Museum of Art, and other esteemed public collections.