Maria R. Dixon American, d. 1896


Little is known about the life of the woman artist known as Maria R. Dixon. In fact there is no known record recounting either her birth or her death. What is known is that Dixon participated in an exhibition of her paintings from as early as 1880 at the Brooklyn Art Association. There is also a record of an exhibition of her works at the National Academy of Design from 1883 until 1896 as well as a similar record of her participation in the Cotton States Exposition in Atlanta in 1895.  


In order to avoid discrimination which existed against women artists during her painting career Maria R. Dixon signed her paintings M.R. Dixon. It is interesting to note that at the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition in Chicago more than ten percent of the entries were made by women. By 1930 in San Francisco at the Panama-Pacific International Exposition women artists comprised in excess of thirty per cent of the entries. Not only did women show their works at all the major exhibitions of the day but they also won a good part of the medals. Yet few women artists at the time were chosen as part of the permanent collections of American museums.


Brooklyn Art Association, New York, 1880

National Academy of Design, New York, 1883-1896

Women's Art Club, New York, 1893

Cotton States Exposition, Atlanta, 1895

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