Marjorie Johnson Lee

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The daughter of a country doctor, Marjorie Johnson-Lee came to live in Fort Worth, Texas in 1925. Johnson-Lee's studies in art began with private lessons from Mrs. G.W. Greathouse in 1925 and, after the completion of high school in 1928, undergraduate courses at Texas Christian University for the following two years. Marjorie Johnson-Lee left TCU at the request of Blanche McVeigh who urged her to enroll at the Fort Worth School of Fine Arts. Under the direction of Wade Jolly, Johnson-Lee became a skilled watercolorist, focusing mainly on regional subject matter. She went on to study at the Art Institute of Chicago, the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center, and the Art Students League in New York.

In the late 1930s and early 1940s Johnson-Lee exhibited with other Fort Worth Circle artists such as Veronica Helfensteller and Bror Utter. Prior to her time in New York, Marjorie Johnson-Lee joined many other artists by enlisting for volunteer service. In 1943 Johnson-Lee joined the U.S. Navy WAVES (Women Accepted for Volunteer Emergency Service). It was at the conclusion of the war that Marjorie moved to New York, where she maintained close ties to Bill Bomar, another Fort Worth Circle artist living in New York, and continued to participate in exhibitions such as the Fort Worth Local Artists Show.

Marjorie Johnson-Lee returned to Texas in 1974 at the conclusion of her 14 year marriage to New York filmmaker Francis Lee. She continued to work until her death in 1997.

Source: The Old Jail Center, Albany, TX

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