Eva Auld Watson Biography

Eva Auld Watson




Eva Auld Watson, painter, printmaker, muralist, and illustrator, was born Eva Auld in 1889 in Bandera, Texas. She spent her first nine years on her father's cattle ranch before her family moved to Pittsburg, Pennsylvania. As a young woman, Eva studied with M. O. Leiser at the Pittsburg School of Design and later with Ernest W. Watson at the Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, New York.


Eva Auld and Ernest Watson married in 1911. The Watsons spent summers in the Berkshire Hills in Massachusetts and in 1915 Ernest co-founded the Berkshire Summer School of Art in Monterey, Massachusetts. Their summer home in Monterey, Greywold, became their studio where they printed and sold their block prints. Their son, Aldren Auld Watson, was born in Brooklyn on May 10, 1917.


Her work is often considered synonymous with her husband's work in that they studied, developed, and applied many of the same block printing techniques; however, Eva's designs were often more stylized, focusing on rich color and vibrant, harmonious landscapes rather than the figurative and work life portrayed by Ernest.


Eva did pursue her own path as an illustrator and muralist. She illustrated Chuck Martinez by Priscilla Horton, which was published in 1940 by Longmans, Green and Company. According to her family history, many churches were graced with her murals.


Her work earned an Honorable Mention at the 1915 Panama Pacific International Exposition. In October 1931, the Indianapolis Museum of Art mounted the exhibition Color Prints by Ernest and Eva Auld Watson and the following December this exhibition was mounted at the U.S. National Museum, Smithsonian Institute.


She was a member of the American Federation of Arts and the Boston Society of Arts and Crafts, and her work is in the collections of the Fitzwillliam Museum, Library of Congress, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, and the Smithsonian American Art Museum.


Eva Auld Watson died in New York City in 1948.