Mildred Nungester Wolfe

Mildred Nungester Wolfe: 1912 - 2009

Noted Portraitist, in the Collection of the National Portrait Gallery

Mildred Wolfe was born in Ohio in 1912.  She grew up in Decatur, Alabama, and graduated from Alabama’s Montevallo College for Women.  She studied at the Art Students League in New York and at the Art Institute of Chicago and received an MFA degree from the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center.  In 1944, Mildred  married Mississippi artist Karl Wolfe, whom she first met at the Dixie Art Colony.

Working through five decades, Mildred Wolfe experimented with and mastered a variety of media: oil, watercolor, pastel, ceramics, printmaking, mosaic, and stained glass.  Since Mildred was a portraitist of note, the National Portrait Gallery in Washington, D.C purchased her portrait of Eudora Welty.

After Karl’s death in 1984, She shared a studio and gallery with her artist daughter, Elizabeth (Bebe) Wolfe, and was still actively painting several mornings a week until the age of 92, when ill health and frailty finally stopped her from painting. She died peacefully in her beloved home at the age of 96, in 2009. Her artwork can be found in many museums and private collections.

  • Born: Ohio on August 23, 1912, grew up in Decatur, AL; Death: Jackson, MS on February 11, 2009
  • Best Known For: Regionalism or American Scene Painting and Portraits
  • Methods: Easel and Plein Air Painting, Watercolors and Oils
  • Secondary Education: Montevallo College for Women, Montevallo, AL; Art Students League, New York City, NY; Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, IL; Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center, Colorado Springs, CO
  • Books: Artists Bluebook; Davenport's Art Reference: The Gold Edition; Who Was Who in American Art, 1564-1975; Mildred Nungester Wolfe, 2005; Imprinting the South, 1920s-1940s, American Art Today, 1939
  • Periodicals: Alabama Heritage, Summer 1996; American Art Review, Oct. 1997
  • Museums: Dixie Art Colony Foundation, Wetumpka, AL;  Jule Collins Smith Museum of Fine Art, Auburn, AL; Mississippi Museum of Art, Jackson, MS; Montgomery Museum of Fine Art, Montgomery, AL; National Portrait Gallery, Washington, DC
  • Archived Files: All archived files are password protected and available upon written request. The archive includes original letters by Fitzpatrick, photographs and examples of his artwork. Access Mildred Nungester Wolfe Files (We are in the process of digitizing our archives. Additional content will be added on a regular basis as it becomes available.)

 Examples of Her Work

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