Background: Frank Alfred Bicknell was born on Born February 17, 1866 in Augusta, Maine.
Education: Bicknell began his artistic training with his father’s cousin, the artist Albion Harris Bicknell (1837-1915), in Malden, Massachusetts. He later trained in New York and Paris. By 1892, not only was one of his paintings accepted into the French Salon, a statement of worldwide artistic acclaim, but it was hung at eye level rather than “skied,” a rare and desirable occurrence indeed for an American first timer.
Achievements: Once back in the United States, Bicknell rented a lush studio in the famed Towers of Madison Square Garden where he would host musicales for members of high society. Although he was very social, Bicknell never married. Indeed, he was most likely gay and traveled often with companions to various fashionable and exotic locales. The New York society columns were filled with his travel exploits: “In November Mr. Bicknell will leave Paris with Mr. Jack Holbrook to spend the winter in Italy and on the Nile.” By 1902, he adopts the members of the Lyme Art Colony as his “family” and has long been considered one of Miss Florence’s favorites. He painted a panel with mountain laurel and birch trees for her dining room.
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