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Margaret in 1995 in New Mexico
during an interview prior to receiving
the Governor's Award for
Excellence in Painting.
Photo: Matt Gray

 

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Margaret Lefranc Art Foundation

 
 


Margaret Lefranc (1907-1998) led an unusual life as an artist in the twentieth century. From the age of thirteen, she spent her teen years and later in Europe, at first in Germany, but primarily in Paris, France, from 1920 to 1933, and again in 1935, where she studied painting and was exposed to the newest developments in contemporary art.

Later, in the United States, circumstances allowed her to divide her time between Coconut Grove in Miami, Florida, and Santa Fe, New Mexico, where from the nineteen-forties an important art colony was developing. Since Margaret was the daughter of a well to do family whose father and brother-in-law were involved in the early distribution of American films in Europe, especially Westerns, it was essentially unimportant for her to make a living by selling her art; however, in later years she successfully invested the proceeds from her art in the stock market. Lefranc was very active in the art communities in both Miami and Santa Fe. Her own paintings were essentially representational but she did venture into abstraction on occasion.

In 1994, Margaret established the Margaret Lefranc Art Foundation, 501(c)3, which was to be funded by selling some of her own paintings in order to give scholarships or stipends to struggling artists. The foundation was also committed to donating and lending some of her paintings to museums and for exhibiting them in traveling exhibitions. The Margaret Lefranc Art Foundation is currently directed by its president, Sandra McKenzie, who is dedicated to carrying out the goals of the foundation.



The Margaret Lefranc Art Foundation was formed in 1994 when Lefranc placed part of her extensive collection of paintings and a monetary contribution from a friend into a 501(c)3. Prior to 1998, Margaret funded the foundation with stock, cash and various monetary contributions from friends, and contributed additional paintings. Generous investment support from friends continues and allows the foundation to move farther toward its mission of promoting Lefranc's legacy. A donation to this foundation qualifies as a tax-deductible contribution.

The Margaret Lefranc Art Foundation succeeded against many odds in retaining the entire body of work as one collection which consists of approximately one thousand works of art. The foundation continues to increase Margaret's reputation and name awareness. During the mid 1970s to mid 1980s, Margaret voluntarily retired from exhibitions while continuing to paint what was true to her heart. In 1990, with support from Sandra McKenzie, Lefranc emerged once again in the art world.

In 1996 Margaret received the Governor's Award for Excellence and Achievement in the Arts for Painting. When asked, "Where were you during those ten years when you weren't exhibiting?" she chuckled as she answered, "Painting."


Sandra McKenzie
President and Director
Margaret Lefranc Art Foundation
369 Montezuma Ave., #421
Santa Fe, NM 87501

e-mail: McKenzieHi@aol.com

 
     
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