Lois Ireland (1928 - )

Birth date: 1928 Death date:  
Birth location: Waunakee, WI Death location:  
Media: Drawing , Painting Web site:
Comprehensive (file rating) - Major Wisconsin artist file that includes comprehensive documentation on artist's life that can be researched on site at MWA.


Lois Ireland Zwettler
Born 1928 in Waunakee, Wisconsin
Resides in Hastings, Minnesota
Growing up in a small rural community north of Madison, Lois Ireland demonstrated an early interest in drawing and painting. Her parents encouraged her talent and provided private lessons in watercolor for her with a young university student, Barbara Dudley. At the age of 14, Lois’s work attracted the attention of John Steuart Curry, the first artist-in-residence at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. His advice to, “paint what you know” informed her entire career as an artist. While still a high school student, Ireland became the youngest member of Wisconsin’s Rural Art Program and her prize winning landscape paintings were included in their exhibitions in Madison. Many of her works sold to the public and were submitted to museum exhibitions in Milwaukee and Pittsburgh.

After high school graduation in 1947, Ireland enrolled in the art program at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. Then in 1949, she left to study at the Art Students’ League in New York with Frank DuMond and Yasuo Kuniyosi.  In 1950, she returned to her home studio in Wisconsin to resume painting the American scene in her unique regionalist style.

Marriage to John Zwettler in 1958 and subsequent motherhood temporarily took precedence over her art career when the couple moved to Oconomowoc, Wisconsin to raise their two sons. Not until the boys were almost grown in the 1970’s did the artist return to painting her stylized rural landscapes and participating in exhibitions. Presently she resides outside Minneapolis in Hastings, Minnesota near to her sons and their families.

Selected One-Person Exhibitions

International Arts Gallery, Madison, Wisconsin
A Corner of the World, Focus Gallery, Museum of Wisconsin Art, West Bend 

Selected Group Exhibitions

1943-1948 Annual Wisconsin Rural Art Show, Madison
1944 11th Annual Wisconsin Salon of Art, UW Union Galleries, Madison
1946  33rd Annual Exhibition of Wisconsin Art, Milwaukee Art Institute 
1985  The Old Home Place, the Art of Rural Wisconsin, WI State Historical Society           
2000-2001  Illusions of Eden, Survey of Regionalist Paintings, tour of U.S., Europe 
WI Painters & Sculptors, Artists in all Media, Madison. 

Wisconsin Affiliations

No affiliations were found.

Wisconsin Art Organizations

No art organizations were found.

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