Florence M. Bruhn
gesso, oil, casein, oil glaze on masonite, 1950
South Dakota Art Museum Collection, 1999.05.01.
Gift of Florence M. Bruhn.
Florence M. Bruhn (1910-1999) was raised in Platte, SD. Her informal art training began under her father Henry, who was a photographer and amateur artist. She received her B.A. and M.A. from the University of South Dakota, and took additional training at universities in Colorado, Arizona, Wyoming and Winnipeg. In 1939, she moved to Watertown and worked as the public-school art teacher there until her retirement.
Her 1999 obituary stated, “encouragement, integrity, strength and commitment were among the gifts she gave her students. She not only taught art, drama and related subjects, but she taught her students how to set a goal and how to achieve it.”
Shingles shows Central City, Colorado, a mining town which was settled in 1859. Bruhn likely visited the area during her summer studies at the University of Colorado Denver. By that time, the area’s gold deposits had depleted and Central City’s population had dwindled to a few hundred residents. This is one of three paintings gifted to the museum from the artist’s estate.
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