A Look Back at the Work by Katharine Steele Renninger
June 22, 2022
Phillips’ Mill is synonymous with the Pennsylvania Impressionists. We were their home base, even as they showed nationally. But our 93 year history includes many other artists and artistic styles. One artist who was integral to our arts community was Katharine Steele Renninger. In contrast to the Impressionists who documented the beautiful landscape, Renninger was a realist who focused on the everyday objects of Bucks County life, things like baby carriages… or Windsor chairs… or even the details of a staircase. Katharine’s work is spare and elegant. She saw the patterns of line and light in the quotidian. Her paintings are as much of a paean to Bucks County living as any of our painters’.
Katharine’s work has been compared to important American Modernists, such as Charles Sheeler, Charles Demuth and Edward Hopper. She was highly decorated, winning prizes at the American Academy of Arts and Letters and the Woodmere Art Museum. In 1975, she was named Distinguished Pennsylvania Artist. She was also instrumental in founding the Michener Art Museum.