Genre painting flourished in the United States during the mid-nineteenth century. These narrative scenes depicting the everyday activities of “stock” or “typed” characters captivated American audiences. Genre paintings helped to express a distinctly “American” character, often through the exploration of racial, regional, or class differences. This exhibition of five paintings includes works by George Caleb Bingham, Eastman Johnson, and Arthur Fitzwilliam Tait — American painters whose works illustrate three very different cultural experiences within the greater context of the United States. These are exhibited alongside two paintings from the Louvre that present the Dutch and English schools which helped to inspire American genre artists. This exhibition will debut at the Louvre from Jan. 23– Apr. 22, 2013, then travel to Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art (May 11– Aug. 12, 2013) and the High Museum of Art (Sept. 14, 2013- Jan.14, 2014)..
This exhibition is part of a multi-year collaboration between Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, Bentonville, the High Museum of Art, Atlanta, the musée du Louvre and the Terra Foundation for American Art.
Supported locally in part by Crystal Bridges’ Global Initiative Fund: Chuck and Terri Erwin, Reed and Mary Ann Greenwood, Stella Boyle Smith Trust, Warren and Harriet Stephens
Arthur Fitzwilliam Tait, Arthur Fitzwilliam Tait, A Tight Fix- Bear Hunting, Early Winter (The Life of a Hunter: A Tight Fix) (detail), 1856, oil on canvas. Photography by Amon Carter Museum of American Art.