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Encyclopedia of Arkansas Minute: Kathryne Bess Hail Travis

An Ozark native enjoyed a career as an artist that spanned much of the United States.

Kathryne Bess Hail was born in 1894 and studied art in high school and college before attending the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 1911, where she met her future husband, Olin Herman Travis.

In 1923, the Travises moved to Dallas and established the Dallas Art Institute. Four years later, they founded the Travis Ozark Summer Art School in an abandoned sawmill in Cass, north of Ozark, which up to fifty students attended during each session of its three-year run. The couple divorced in 1934 and Kathryne continued painting, gaining fame for her still life paintings as she worked in California, Washington, Oregon, Colorado, Texas and Louisiana.

She moved to Ruidoso, New Mexico, in 1960, where she operated the Kathryne Hail Travis Summer School of Painting. She died there in 1972, and her ashes were scattered in her native Ozark.

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