James Brade Sword

Artist Biography

Born in Philadelphia, James Brade Sword became known for his landscapes, seascapes, and genre scenes. Though he began his career as a civil engineer, Sword turned to drawing and painting, receiving his artistic training at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. By autumn 1871, he opened a studio in New York. His sketching trips to the Green Mountains, Allegheny Mountains, Bar Harbor, Conanicut Island, and Lake George profoundly influenced his work. It was at Lake George that he met and painted with the esteemed Asher B. Durand.

Sword was an active member of the art community of Philadelphia. He served as president of the Philadelphia Society of Artists and was a founder and director of the Art Club of Philadelphia. In addition to the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, he exhibited his work at the National Academy of Design, the Brooklyn Art Association, and the Art Institute of Chicago, in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. His work is included in the collections of the Colby College Museum of Art, the Reading Public Museum, the Farnsworth Art Museum, and the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts.

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