For more than 40 years, artist Emily O. “Lee” Garrison (1928 – 2014) spent her summers in Vermont, relaxing with friends, communing with fellow artists, painting and sketching. It was her final wish to give back in some way to the region for which she felt such an affinity. Before her death, Lee made arrangements to leave her life’s work to the Burlington City Arts Foundation in order to support the arts and regional artists through the sale of her work. Burlington City Arts is grateful for this generous gift, which will help benefit, among others, its exhibition and education programming.
Though she loved her home and studio in Cambridge, Massachusetts, Lee was truly a resident of the world. She had lived in New York, Salzburg, Rome and Naples, and traveled much of the rest of the world during her long and active life. Never without the tools of her trade, Lee sketched and painted in places as far-flung as the gardens of Positano and the mountains of Chiusaforte in Italy, to archeological excavations at Sardis in Turkey, and the shores of Lake Champlain in Vermont.
Lee studied fine art at Connecticut College in the 1940s and during the 1960s attended the Ruskin School of Drawing at Oxford University, the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, and the Art Students’ League in New York. Her work is included in many private collections, several public collections, including the Sardis collection at Harvard Art Museums, and she exhibited in solo and group shows throughout Vermont and the northeastern United States, and in numerous European venues.