Vila Taylor Watson
Vila Taylor Watson, a portrait painter was often
professionally referred to as E.V.T. Watson. She
was born as Elizabeth Vila Taylor in Westfield,
NJ. She died in 1949. She graduated from The Boston
Museum of Fine Arts School, now called The School
of the Museum Fine Arts, Boston. Elizabeth exhibited her
paintings for 50 years in Boston.
Elizabeth was primarily known as a portrait painter,
both full size and miniature. She moved to the Boston
area and joined the ranks of the best Boston artists
of the Boston School of painters. She studied with
Edmund Tarbell and Walter DeCamp and had a studio
at Harcourt Studios, until it perished in a fire, and then Fenway Studio for most of the years that she
flourished as a painter. Fenway Studios is still
in existence today, in its same role, providing
artist’s studios. Fenway Studios in one of
the most famous surviving Arts and Crafts architectural
buildings in Boston. Some of the best Boston School
painters attended the School of the Musuem of Fine
Arts and had studios at Fenway Studios.
Her portrait subjects were primarily of academic,
artistic, political, civic, religious and social
leading figures. The grand figure shown on this site is
a life-size portrait of opera singer, Madame
Marie Conde. This was her stage name, while her real name
was Erestine Cobern Byer. Elizabeth’s portraits
included those of Judge Anderson of the Circuit
Court of Appeals; Dr. Henry Norris Russell, director
at Princeton Observatory; Grace Moore, opera singer;
and Judge Emma Fall Scholfield.
After she married Mortimer Watson, Elizabeth summered
on Clarks Island off of the coast of Massachusetts.
The island is owned by, in part by the Watsons.
The rest of the year she was a resident of Fenway
Studios. She was buried at Forest Hills Cemetery
in Boston with her family.