The Hudson River School emerged during the second quarter of the 19th century in New York City. There, a loosely knit group of artists and writers forged the first American landscape vision and literary voice. That American vision - still widely influential today - was grounded in a view of the natural world as a source of spiritual renewal and an expression of national identity. This vision was first expressed throughout the magnificent scenery of the Hudson River Valley region, including the Catskills, which was accessible to writers, artists and sightseers via traffic on the great river that gave the school its name.
"For apart from the skillfulness and dreaminess of so many of the pictures, the fact that several of them have not been on public display in half a century makes the exhibition even more remarkable." - The New York Times
The exhibition tells this story in four grand thematic sections. Within these broad groupings, the paintings show how American artists embodied powerful ideas about nature, culture and history.
Nature and the Grand American Vision allows audiences to enjoy and study superb examples of the Historical Society's unsurpassed collection of Hudson River School paintings while the galleries of the N-YHS are closed for a transformative $65 million renovation project.
Nicole D. Smith, media relations director
Midlands Authority for Conventions, Sports & Tourism
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