Abraham Bogdonave was born
in Minsk, Russia and emigrated with his parents to America when
he was 14. After studying at the Cooper Union Institute of Art,
the National Academy of Design and with George Willoughby Maynard
and Francis Coates Jones, he worked as a mural painter in New
York City. He first visited Monhegan Island, off the coast of
Mainem in 1918, and bought a house there 2 years later. He joined
a colony of artists that included Robert Henri, George Bellows,
Rockwell Kent, and Edward Hopper. He returned there every summer
of his for the rest of his life.
He preferred to paint outdoors, emphasizing
rocks and their masses. On Monhegan he studied with color theorist
and chemist Maximilian Toch, who advocated the use of natural
pigments and a limited palette to create harmonious palettes
and paintings that were permanent and would not discolor or disintegrate
because of poor color chemistry.
His work was included in annual exhibitions
at The National Academy of Design, The Pennsylvania Academy of
Fine Arts, The Carnegie Institute, and The Corcoran Gallery.
His work is included in the Farnsworth
Museum, Rockland, Maine and the Monhegan Museum, Maine.