Violet Oakley - illustrator, muralist, writer, and pacifist - played a prominent role in the artistic life of Philadelphia for almost half a century. Her illustrations for books, magazines and poems appeared in many popular publications. Born to an artistic family in New Jersey, Oakley studied at New York's Art Students League and later in Paris. She returned to America in 1896, settling in Philadelphia and enrolling briefly at the Pennsylvania Academy before entering Howard Pyle's illustration class at the Drexel Institute of Art, Science, and Industry. With Pyle's support, Oakley soon embarked on a lucrative career as a commercial illustrator and decorative artist. "June" was produced as a cover for a 1902 issue of "Everybody's Magazine," a monthly periodical targeted at a female audience, published by the New York branch of John Wanamaker's merchandising empire. Oakley's composition of two women standing in front of a flower-covered wall is in keeping with what was considered at the time to be a natural subject for both women artists and women readers.
Date of Birth
Oil, charcoal, and graphite on composition board
16 3/16 x 17 1/16 in. (41.11625 x 43.33875 cm.); framed: 23 3/4 x 24 1/2 x 1 in. (60.325 x 62.23 x 2.54 cm.)
Henry D. Gilpin Fund