National Museum of Women in the Arts
Alice Acheson
August 12 1895 - January 20 1996
Photograph of Alice Acheson with Begum Liaquat Ali Khan, (detail), 1950, unknown photographer. Department of State collection, Truman Presidential Museum and Library, Independence, MO, USA
Place of Birth:
Phonetic Spelling:
AL-iss ACH-ih-sehn
Minority status:
White non-Hispanic
Work Type/Media:
Drawings and prints, Painting
Artistic Role(s):
Landscape Painter, Painter, Printmaker, Still life Painter
Artist's Biography:
Alice Acheson came from a family of painters. Her grandfather, John Mix Stanley, was an explorer and well-known painter of Indians and the American West. Her mother, Jane Caroline Stanley, was a talented watercolorist.

Acheson received her initial training at Wellesley College. She also studied in Boston at the School of Fine Arts. In 1817, she married Dean Acheson, who later became President Harry S. Truman’s Secretary of State.

Acheson lived in Washington, DC from 1919 until her death in 1996. She studied at the Corcoran School of Art and the Phillips Gallery School and has works in the collections of both. While her husband pursued his political career, Acheson was an active participant in the development of the Washington art scene including the opening of the National Gallery, the Phillips Collection, and other eminent art establishments. She was a member of the Society of Washington Artists and the Washington Watercolor Society.

Watercolors and prints of her travels to Portugal, Italy, Greece, the Canadian Rockies, and the Caribbean have been exhibited throughout the United States and abroad. Acheson’s use of loose brushstrokes and vibrant colors bring her landscapes and cityscapes to life. Similarly, her still lifes are filled with energy. A series of linoleum cut prints by Acheson were printed in Agnes Rothberg’s book New Roads in Old Virginia in 1937.

Other Occupation(s):
Place(s) of Residence:
Where Trained/Schools:
Phillips Gallery School, Washington, DC, USA (ca. 1934) Corcoran School of Art, Washington, DC, USA (ca. 1919) Wellesley College, Wellesley, MA, USA (ca. 1917) School of The Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, MA, USA (ca. 1917)
Related Visual Artists:
granddaughter of John Mix Stanley daughter of Jane Caroline Stanley student of Howard Smith student of Richard Meryman student of Alexander James student of Law Watkins student of Karl Knaths influenced by Abbot Thayer classmate of Charles Dunn classmate of Jerry Farnsworth classmate of Eugene Weiss classmate of Mathilde Leisenring
Fellowships, grants and awards:
Nominee, National Exhibition of American Artists, New York, NY, USA (1937) Award, National Association of Women Painters and Sculptors, New York, NY, USA Award, Society of Washington Artists, Washington, DC, USA
Earliest exhibition:
The Studio House, Washington, DC, USA (1936)
Artist retrospective(s):
Related places
Washington (died at)