Wanda Gág Biography

Wanda Gág





Wanda Hazel Gág, painter, printmaker, illustrator and author, was born to Lissi and Anton Gág on 11 March 1893 in New Ulm, Minnesota. After graduating from the New Ulm High School, she studied for one year at the St. Paul School of Art followed by three years at the Minneapolis School Art. In 1917, Gág received a scholarship to study for one year at the Art Students League in New York City.

Gág began earning her living as a commercial illustrator in 1919 and had her first solo exhibition of her art at the New York Public Library in 1923. The Weyhe Gallery in New York mounted a solo exhibition of her graphic work in 1926 and that began her lifelong relationship with Carl Zigrosser, at that time the gallery manager. Her work was selected by the American Institute of Graphic Arts Fifty Prints of the Year in 1928, 1929, 1931, 1932, 1936, 1937 and 1938. She was a member of the Society of American Graphic Artists, the American Artists Congress and the League of American Writers.

The work of Wanda Hazel Gág is represented in the collections of the Baltimore Museum, Maryland; the Brooklyn Museum, New York; the Detroit Museum of Art, Michigan; the Amon Carter Museum of American Art, Fort Worth, Texas; the Museum of Fine Arts Houston, Texas; the British Museum, London; the Minneapolis Institute of Art Collection, Minnesota; the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Modern Art, and the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; the National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa; the Pennsylvania Academy of the Arts and the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Pennsylvania; the McNay Art Museum, San Antonio, Texas; the Library of Congress, the National Gallery of Art, and the Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington, D.C.

Gág was a pioneer in children’s book writing, combining her text with her illustrations. In 1928 she produced Millions of Cats, the oldest American picture book for children still in print, for which she won a Newbery Medal. Her other books are The ABC Bunny, The Funny Thing, Snippy and Snappy, Gone is Gone and Nothing at All. She also illustrated Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs and Tales from Grimm. Gág won her second Newbery Medal for The ABC Bunny and Caldecott Medals for Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs and Nothing at All. She was posthumously honored with the Lewis Carroll Shelf Award in 1958 and the Kerlan Award in 1977.

Wanda Hazel Gág died in Milford, New Jersey 27 June 1946.