Born into a family where material privilege interlaced with progressive thinking, Weston would struggle to balance his compelling need to make art with his persuasive advocacy for humanitarian causes.

Weston’s athletic body was stricken with polio in 1911, leaving him with an emaciated leg.  By dint of his strong will, Weston threw his crutches away and continued to climb his beloved Adirondacks. After graduating magna cum laude from Harvard in 1916, Weston joined the British YMCA, and as part of his relief activities formed the Baghdad Art Club. The kaleidoscopic desert colors that he sketched would reverberate in his painting fifty years later. And scenes of famine that he observed on his travels home through Persia and India would become catalysts for later humanitarian work.<previous page / next page>

Elwand Range, 1919, oil on cardboard. Private collection.

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Copyright © 2005 Harold Weston Foundation