William J. Forsyth
William J. Forsyth was born on October 15th, 1854 in California, Ohio. At a young age, William J. Forsyth had a love for art, books, and the beauty of nature. He enrolled at Indiana School of Art in Indianapolis in 1877 and was taught by John Love and James Gookins. The school closed in 1879, but William J. Forsyth, Thomas E. Hibben, and Fred Hetherington used the school rooms to hold meetings for their sketching and etching club called the Bohe Club. In 1881, William J. Forsyth joined Theodore Clement Steele, John Ottis Adams, and Otto Stark to study at the Royal Academy of Painting in Munich, Germany. They would later form the “Hoosier Group” with the addition of Richard Buckner Gruelle. This was one of the most influential groups of painters in the west in the late 1800s going into the 1900s. William J. Forsyth joined John Ottis Adams to teach in Munich at the Muncie Art School in 1882 and it became his profession until 1891. Every summer, he would return to Indiana to paint and exhibit his work. He had a short stint as an instructor at Indiana School of Art along with Steele from 1891 to 1892. After that he took in students for private lessons until October 1906 when he replaced John Adams as the principal art instructor at the John Herron Art Institute. William J. Forsyth contributed much of his own time to building up other aspiring artists. When he did exhibit, William J. Forsyth gained medals in places like the St. Louis World’s Fair, the Panama-Pacific International Exposition in San Francisco, California, and the International Fine Arts Exposition in Buenos Aires, Argentina. William J. Forsyth died on March 29th, 1935 as the last of the Hoosier Group artists.