Artist Biography

1873 - 1954

Luvena Buchanan, a painter and muralist, was born in Le Mars, Iowa on December 23, 1873 of Scottish parents. She was educated in Pittsburgh, Kansas. During 1910-14 she studied at the Art Institute of Chicago under Vanderpoel, Walcott, and Norton. At that school she met artist Edouard Vysekal. They were married in Chicago before moving to Los Angeles in 1914 to paint murals in the Barbara Worth Hotel in El Centro. After settling in California, Mrs. Vysekal further studied with Stanton MacDonald-Wright. In 1922, under the pseudonym Benjamin Blue, she authored Counterfeit Presentations, a series of character sketches of local artists. Upon the death of her husband in 1939, she became director of the Vysekal Gallery in Hollywood. Mrs. Vysekal was a resident of Los Angeles until her death on January 11, 1954. Her sister was sculptor Ella Buchanan. Exhibited: Friday Morning Club (Los Angeles), 1916, 1929 (with husband); California Art Club, 1917-29; Modern Art Workers (Los Angeles), 1919-26; Painters & Sculptors of Los Angeles, 1922-35; Western Painters, 1924; Los Angeles County Museum of Art, 1924, 1927 (with Mabel Alvarez), 1929, 1932; California State Fair, 1926; California Watercolor Society, 1928; Hollywood Woman's Club, 1929 (with husband); Artists of Southern California, 1930; Oakland Art Gallery, 1932; Ebell Club (Los Angeles), 1934; Foundation of Western Art (Los Angeles), 1936; All-California Show, 1939. Awards: dozens after 1924. Works held: Kansas State Capitol; State Historical Building (Topeka); Los Angeles Art Institute; State Exposition Building (Los Angeles).

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