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Spurred by the artists from the North East who comprised the Hudson River School, landscape painting was one of the most popular subjects in nineteenth-century America. Pushed ever westward by expansionist notions of Manifest Destiny, a belief that such territorial expansion was inevitable and pre-ordained. Painters were also part of government initiatives to survey the vast region, particularly in regards to potential railroad routes and to learn about the indigenous populations they encountered.
Adventurous artists sought landscape subjects beyond the continental United States, some traveling to the Arctic, where they found immense icebergs and the Aurora Borealis (these were dangerous journeys). Artists visited equatorial South America where they thrilled to the sublime vistas and smoldering volcanos they discovered. The Amazon and the Andes were rich sources for exotic paintings. Many regarded South America as “a land of scientific wonders, golden riches, and edenic innocence.” J.P. Reichardt’s Latin American Scene of 1866 captures the attraction of humid locales very different from North America.
Free for Members, veterans and active-duty Military, and youth aged 5 and under.
All exhibitions are included with General Admission.
$23 — Adults
$20 — Senior Citizens (Ages 65+)
$18 — Students (with ID)
$14 — Youth (Ages 6-17)
This special installation is open to the public during voluntary-donation, pay-what-you-wish hours from 3–9 pm each Wednesday, from 6–10 pm on the first Friday of each month, and is free for youth ages 17 from 10 am–5 pm on the last Saturday of each month during Creative Saturdays: Free Under 18.
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John Mix Stanley, Chain of Spires Along the Gila River, 1855. Oil on canvas. Museum purchase.
Thomas Hill, El Capitan and Bridal Veil Falls, Yosemite Valley, not dated. Oil on canvas. Gift of Mr. and Mrs. John B. Mills, by exchange.