Margaret Kitto

Margaret Kitto
1871 - 1925

Margaret E. Kitto was born on London, England in 1871, where she studied art before coming to Victoria with her family in 1891.

From 1922 she operated the Deco Art Studio with fellow artist Lillian Sweeney producing various art and craft creations for sale.  Kitto was the most professional of local women artists at this time, able to secure a modest living from sales supplemented by teaching at the Sacred Heart Convent School, the Western Art Studio and evening courses organized by the school board.  Among her pupils was Edythe Hembroff-Schleicher, later to be friend, painting colleague and biographer of Emily Carr.

Kitto was a member of the Sketching Club (1900-1909) in which, along with Josephine Crease, she led sketching parties to local scenes.  She was a charter member of the Island Arts and Crafts Society, serving on the executive committee 1911-1917, as second vice president 1918-1919 and as vice-president in 1925.

Operating primarily in watercolour, her work can be found in the collections of the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria.  She was known for depictions of Mount Baker and vibrant local scenes of sun-yellow broom.

The Society spent fifteen years working on Margaret Kitto’s original idea of establishing a permanent art gallery.  This seemed to have reached fruition when the Canadian Pacific Railway provided accommodation attached to the Crystal Garden in 1925, the year of this artist’s passing.

The Lions, Vancouver AGGV NO3976

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