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Alexander, John White (07 October 1856–31 May 1915), artist, was born in Allegheny City, Pennsylvania, the son of John Alexander and Fanny Smith. Alexander’s father died soon after his birth, and his mother died when he was five years old. Sent to live with his maternal grandparents, Alexander left school at the age of twelve to work as a messenger for the Atlantic and Pacific Telegraph Company in Pittsburgh. Colonel Edward Jay Allen, an official of the firm, was impressed by a sketch done by Alexander. Allen eventually adopted Alexander....


Jonson, Raymond (18 July 1891–10 May 1982), painter and theater graphic designer, was born Carl Raymond Johnson near Chariton, Iowa, the son of the Reverend Gustav Johnson and Josephine Abrahamson. Jonson was home-schooled until 1899, when he attended his first school in Colorado Springs, Colorado, where the family lived for a brief period. In 1902 the family settled in Portland, Oregon. Jonson studied at the Portland Art Museum in 1909 with an instructor who had been a student of Arthur Wesley Dow. Jonson moved to Chicago in 1910 to study art at the Academy of Fine Arts. He later enrolled at the Art Institute of Chicago....


Pavel Tchelitchew Photograph by Carl Van Vechten, 1934. Courtesy of the Library of Congress (LC-USZ62-103672).


Tchelitchew, Pavel (21 September 1898–31 July 1957), painter and stage designer, was born in Kaluga, Russia, near Moscow, the son of Fedor Chelishchev and Nadezhda Permyakov, progressive aristocrats who implemented Tolstoian ideals in caring for the peasants on their vast estates. He received private tutoring and began drawing at an early age, inspired by the illustrations of Gustave Doré. He attended Moscow University from 1916 until 1918 and studied art at Moscow’s Academy. The family fled to Kiev following the Russian Revolution of 1918. Tchelitchew studied at the Kiev Academy under Alexandra Exter, who applied the principles of Russian constructivism to theatrical design. He designed posters and collaborated on a series of music hall productions with Isaac Rabinovitch, an important Soviet stage designer. Around 1919 Tchelitchew’s style began to evolve away from cubist abstraction, employing curving lines and some representational elements....