Edgar Louis Ewing Biography

Edgar Louis Ewing




Edgar Louis Ewing was born in Hartington, Nebraska in 1913. Upon graduating high school he moved to Chicago to pursue training at the Art Institute of Chicago. Recognized as a promising young artist, he was given an art fellowship to study in Europe, where he would come to return many times over. Ewing's travels throughout his life, through Africa, Europe, and the Middle East, promoted great artistic inspiration. He was especially intrigued by the history of Ancient Greece and would eventually paint his Roman Series, one of the artist's most important works.

Ewing fought in World War II, but upon the War's end he resumed working as an artist. Offered a teaching position on the West Coast the artist began teaching at the University of Southern California, where he would remain for the majority of his career. Art schools in Los Angeles were immensely important during the mid-century. Without the extensive infrastructure of museums, galleries, collectors, and criticism that existed on the East Coast, California art schools became the primary outlets of artistic innovation and collaboration.

An entire school of progressive artists worked, exhibited, and taught together at Los Angeles’s various art schools including Otis Art Institute (founded in 1918), Chouinard Art Institute (founded in 1921), and Jepson Art Institute (founded in 1947). Ewing was part of this community and taught alongside the important Hungarian/American artist Francis De Erdely while at USC. Edgar Ewing's artistic achievements are prolific, he exhibited widely, and received extensive critical acclaim.

By Alissa J. Anderson