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American Impressionism on display at the Society of the Four Arts

Childe Hassam (American, 1859–1935) Old House, East Hampton, 1917 oil on linen, Bank of America Collection

Photos by The Society of the Four Arts

The Society of the Four Arts, in partnership with Bank of America, brings an art show on American impressionism to the Esther B. O’Keeffe Gallery in Palm Beach.

“In a New Light: American Impressionism 1870-1940, Works From the Bank of America Collection” is running through April 16, with guided tours at 10:30 a.m. Wednesdays and 11 a.m. Saturdays.

The exhibition features roughly 130 works from over 70 artists. The artists include George Innes, Childe Hassam, Thomas Moran, John Sloan and Guy Carleton Wiggins.

These artists and their paintings are important to understanding the impressionist movement because they show how daily life was interpreted. American impressionism during this period featured peaceful communities in many rural areas where emerging artists would learn and collaborate with one another.

The exhibition also highlights the vast landscapes and vivid colors used in the depictions of rural America.

Louis Hovey Sharp (American, 1874–1946), detail of Pasadena Light, undated, oil on linen, Bank of America Collection

“We are excited at the opportunity to partner with the Society of the Four Arts to bring this incredible exhibition as part of our Arts in our Communities program that loans exhibitions at no cost to nonprofit community museums,” said Fabiola Brumley, the president of Bank of America Palm Beach County.

Felicie Waldo Howell (American, 1897–1968), Wall Street, The Noon Hour, 1925, oil on linen, Bank of America Collection

American impressionism is similar to French Impressionism in the way that it depicts everyday life through “en plein air” pieces.

American impressionists were never able to fully embrace the radical spontaneity of the impressionist movement’s forefathers. American impressionism is also different in the way it captures the upper class in order to show off America's economic strength.

“In a New Light” portrays the evolving artwork in America. Not only did the art differ during the 20th century, but the mindset changed throughout society.

“The Bank of America curators have provided great context and a visual timeline with works in the style and movements that were popular before and after impressionism, placing it in the timeline of American art,” said Rebecca A. Dunham, the Four Arts’ head of fine arts and curator.

Visitors must wear masks while indoors at the Society of the Four Arts. Tickets are $10 but are free for Four Arts members and children 14 and younger.

Bank of America curator Jennifer S. Brown, is coming to the Society of the Four Arts on April 4, at 11 a.m. to discuss the exhibit and the history of American impressionism.

For more information about the exhibit, visit the website.


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