Artist Biography

Eleanor LUKITS
1909 - 1948

Eleanor Merriam was born in Detroit, Michigan on February 6, 1909. Raised in an artistic milieu, Eleanor first learned to paint from her father, James A. Merriam. After moving to Los Angeles in 1920, she enrolled at Lukits Academy of Art where she was trained in classical and traditional art under Theodore Lukits. After several years of study and winning many prizes at the Friday Morning Club and Ebell Club, she married her teacher in 1937. During World War Two she made weekly trips to the Torrance Hospital to sketch the servicemen and, following the war, she and her husband continued teaching many of the veterans at the Lukits Academy. She first aspired to be a portrait painter but later specialized in nature studies and floral still lifes with madonnas and Oriental figures. Mrs. Lukits was active in southern California until her tragic death from burns following a gasoline explosion on September 16, 1948. Due to her short lifespan, her works are rare. Member: Women Painters of the West; Las Artistas; Society of Western Artists.

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