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John Ottis Adams

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John Ottis Adams was born on July 8, 1851, in Johnson County, Indiana. His visit to the 1869 Indiana State Fair in Indianapolis inspired him to become an artist. In the same year, he enrolled at Wabash College in Crawfordsville for an art degree. Then in 1872, John Ottis Adams traveled to London, England to train at South Kensington School of Art and finished his degree, and stayed to study under John Parker. He returned to Indiana in 1874 to begin his career as a portrait painter and art educator. John Ottis Adams gained enough financial success to go to Germany to go into further education at the Academy of Fine Arts. He met Theodore Clement Steele and William J. Forsyth during his studies. When he returned to Indiana in 1887, he would later form the “Hoosier Group” with these men, Otto Stark, and Richard Buckner Gruelle. Together, they created the most influential Impressionist landscape art of 20th-century America. Adams was hired by the John Herron Art Institute in Indianapolis, Indiana to be a teacher in 1902. He bought a house near the institute and taught for the rest of his life. He died on January 28, 1927.

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