Arthur Fitzwilliam Tait

British/American , 1819 - 1905

Arthur Fitzwilliam Tait was born in Livesey Hall near Liverpool, England in 1819. A self-taught artist, he was a teacher of drawing and lithography in Liverpool before he moved to the United States.

Tait took an interest in frontier life while assisting George Catlin with his traveling Indian Gallery in France and England in the 1840s. During the 1850s, Tait summered in the Adirondacks, where he painted realistic nature scenes. In 1852 Currier and Ives printed Tait’s sporting views, for which he gained recognition. He collaborated with James Hart on paintings of cattle and completed a Currier and Ives series of Indians and Western life genres with Louis Mauer. Tait and Mauer had no prior knowledge of Indians and their research was done in the Astor Library, using illustrations by Bodmer and prints by Catlin. Louis Prang began purchasing Tait’s paintings in 1866 to make prints. Known for a style that was consistent and unchanging, Tait had a long, productive career until his death in 1905.

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