Florence <I>Wysinger</I> Allen

Florence Wysinger Allen

Birth
Oakland, Alameda County, California, USA
Death 1 Jun 1997 (aged 84)
El Sobrante, Contra Costa County, California, USA
Burial Cremated, Ashes scattered at sea, Specifically: Funeral arrangements were handled by the Neptune Society. Her ashes were scattered at sea.
Memorial ID 95436649 · View Source
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Florence Virginia Wysinger Allen (Flo Allen), was an artists' model for more than 30 years. She was called "San Francisco's best loved artists' model". Her father, Marion, was the son of California pioneer Edmond Edward Wysinger. Her mother, née Moore, was a concert pianist. Allen attended Fremont High School and became active in the San Francisco arts community and became a civil rights activist and newspaper columnist. Her social circle included the likes of Paul Robeson, Paul Newman, Harry Belafonte and Allen Ginsberg. When not modeling she worked as a hostess at North Beach restaurants such as Washington Square Bar and Grill. In 1987 she was struck by a truck while crossing a street near Fisherman's Wharf, breaking both her legs and restricting her mobility.

Florence was educated at Fremont High School and later became involved in the San Francisco literary and artistic community as a civil rights activist and newspaper columnist. She began modeling in 1933 and worked as an artist's model for most of the prominent figurative painters working in the Bay Area of San Francisco, including Diego Rivera, Mark Rothko, and Wayne Thiebaud. She also worked as a model in university art classes, including those at the San Francisco Art Institute, Mills College, University of California at Berkeley, Stanford University, and the California College of Arts and Crafts. In 1946, Ms. Allen founded The Bay Area Models Guild BAMG) of San Francisco.

After injuries from a traffic accident limited her mobility in 1987, she became the Model Coordinator at the College of Arts and Crafts in Oakland where she also taught a Model Certification Workshop.

Florence Virginia Wysinger Allen was married twice, but the husband of significance was Eugene Allen, now deceased. She was survived by two sisters, Ambrosia Wysinger Jones and Edna Wysinger Black. She died at the home of Edna Black of El Sobrante, CA.

In 1995 Flo donated her papers to the national collections of the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.

There is an article in the San Francisco SFGate: Flo Allen -- Legendary Artist's Model


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  • Created by: Myra Wysinger
  • Added: 16 Aug 2012
  • Find a Grave Memorial 95436649
  • Find a Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Florence Wysinger Allen (14 Mar 1913–1 Jun 1997), Find a Grave Memorial no. 95436649, ; Maintained by Myra Wysinger (contributor 47591359) Cremated, Ashes scattered at sea, who reports a Funeral arrangements were handled by the Neptune Society. Her ashes were scattered at sea..