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Esther Lapham Hoyt Sawyer

Esther Lapham Hoyt Sawyer

(1890-1971)
Born: Buffalo, New York, United States

Esther Lapham Hoyt Sawyer was a painter and an art patron from Buffalo, New York. A graduate of Buffalo Seminary, she later attended the Albright Art Gallery School. There she was awarded a national drawing scholarship to study with the Art Students League in New York City. There she met Edwin Dickinson, and later studied with him on Cape Cod. She bought the first painting he sold, an abstraction, and eventually commissioned his work and paid him an annual stipend. His atmospheric style may have influenced her drawings during World War II, when she served as a nurse.

She founded the Art Collectors and Artists Association in 1913, which became the members advisory board of the Albright-Knox Art Gallery. She was a founding member of the rebel art group called the Patteran Society in 1933. As an early leader in the planned-parenthood movement in New York State, she saw the opening the organization’s first Buffalo clinic, also in 1933.  It was the second center to be opened in the state.