Barton, John Rector, 1897- / Rural artists of Wisconsin
Elizabeth Faulkner Nolan: Route 2, Waukesha. Keynote of freedom, pp. 111-114
Academy of Art in Michigan, where under Carl Milles she studied the fundamentals of design. The architect, Saarinen, also made a strong impression on her, when he substituted for a semester in the design class. Per- haps the strongest influence over her was Curry. Dur- ing the earlier, uncertain years, it was his tour of the gallery at each rural exhibit which kept her producing. "The annual tour was a wonderful experience for me, and the inspiration that kept me returning each year for criticism and guidance." When Curry first saw her work in pastel, "Spring Frontispiece," at the third Rural Art Exhibit, he praised its imaginative design, its elusive color values. Five times she has exhibited at the state fair, winning prizes in all but one year. At the Milwaukee Art Insti- tute her work has been accepted twice. "A Bit of Blue Sky," a sculptured terra cotta of a newly born calf, was sold from the 1944 spring exhibit. The J. I. Case Pur- chase Prize was awarded for her painting of "Emil's Farm" in 1946. She has taken home eleven first prizes from the local dairy show. Two of her pictures are in the Permanent Collection, and a large mural hangs in the Vernon Methodist Church in her community. Natural environment has remained a compelling force in the life of this young farm woman; it was typi- cal of her, when she went to Cranbrook to study art, to live on a farm. She had learned to fly a plane and flew to Cranbrook with her instructor. Circling the town, she chose from the air a place she liked, landed, and taxied to the farm. There she persuaded the farmer and his wife to take her in as a boarder. This grew out of a deep desire to stay close to the land, to remain steeped in the atmosphere of the country side. Elizabeth is married to Indiana-born Frank Nolan, an electrical engineer at the Allis-Chalmers Company. They have established a home seven miles east of the farm home at Bonniedale. The Nolan home stands on the crest of Prospect Hill. From any direction appear miles of rolling farm lands dotted with green and yel- low fields and red barns. In the southern distance three blue lakes stretch over the landscape. At the very foot of the hill nestles the farm to which great-grandfather Thomas Faulkner brought his bride in 1846. As Elizabeth Nolan faces a life-time job of home- making, she happily contemplates a continuance of her art career at the same time. In fact, she believes that they are a part of the same reality. Her art reflects the values of farm and home, and the home in turn is al- ready enriched by her linocuts, ceramics, water color, sculpture, drawings, and oil painting. The struggle to- wards freedom of expression has a new setting, but the struggle will go on, with the urge to create an integral part of each day's work. The chains of habit and con- vention will never bind the life of this young woman. 114
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