The American Pre-Raphaelites: Radical Realists

14 April–21 July 2019

Exhibition Overview

mount-tom-thomas-charles-farrer.jpg

Thomas Charles Farrer, Mount Tom, 1865, oil on canvas, John Wilmerding Collection, Promised Gift.

In celebration of the 200th anniversary of the birth of John Ruskin (1819–1900), the most influential art critic of the Victorian era, the Gallery will present more than 90 paintings, watercolors, and drawings created by American artists who were profoundly influenced by Ruskin’s call for a revolutionary change in the practice of art. The exhibition includes a number of recently discovered works never before exhibited publicly. Ruskin’s rejection of traditional academic art and his plea for works that reflected a deep reverence for both the spiritual and scientific qualities of the natural world found a sympathetic audience in America among a group of like-minded artists, architects, scientists, critics, and collectors. New research, included in the exhibition catalog, reveals that the members of the Association for the Advancement of Truth in Art sought reform not only in the practice of art, but also in the broader political arena—most were abolitionists deeply engaged in the fight against slavery. Coded references to the Civil War are present in a number of exquisitely detailed landscape paintings that do not appear—at first glance—to carry symbolic meaning. Members of the group followed Ruskin’s dictum to record the natural world with strict fidelity, but they also created works that often include a rich political subtext.

Read More

Similar Exhibitions

Load More

We use our own and third party cookies to enable you to navigate around our Site, use its features and engage on social media, and to allow us to perform analytics, remember your preferences, provide services that you have requested and produce content and advertisements tailored to your interests, both on our Site as well as others. For more information, or to learn how to change your cookie or marketing preferences, please see our updated Privacy Policy & Cookie Policy.

Close