Meadowlark Gallery: The Artist Biographies

E. I. Couse (1866-1936)

Eanger Irving Couse was born in Saginaw, Michigan in 1866 and died in Albuquerque, New Mexico in 1936. E. I. Couse painted houses in Saginaw to earn tuition for the Art Institute of Chicago in 1884. He then studied at the National Academy of Design and from 1887 to 1890 at the Julien Academy in Paris under Robert Fleury and Bouguereau. He met in Paris and in 1889 married an Oregon girl. They moved to Oregon where Couse painted Northwest coast Indians but the paintings did not sell. Couse complained that the Indians were not red and that the weather was gray. He spent the next ten years on the coast of Normandy, painting marketable pastorals and marines, then returned to a studio in New York City. On the recommendation of Joseph Henry Sharp and also of Blumenschein, Couse made his first visit to Taos in June of 1902. He spent his winters in New York City and each summer in Taos where the Indians called him "Green Mountain" because he was rather "large and round, and often wears a green sweater." In 1927, Couse gave up his New York City studio and settled permanently in Taos, bringing recognition to "the community and its Indian heritage. Each of his compositions gives a true picture of some phase of Indian life, and each Indian is true to the type. He has come as close to the spirit of the Indian as the white man ever can." A good merchandiser of his own paintings, Couse produced about fifteen hundred in his lifetime.

View high resolution images of works by E. I. Couse when available.