Montclair Art Museum

Montclair, NJ



Primal Visions: Albert Bierstadt "Discovers" America, 1859-1893


"Primal Visions: Albert Bierstadt 'Discovers' America, 1859-1893," an important exhibition of the work of one of the signature painters of America's nineteenth-century, opens at the Montclair Art Museum on November 18, 2001, inaugurating one of the Museum's newly built exhibition galleries. On view through February 3, 2002, and curated by Associate Curator Diane P. Fischer, the centerpiece of the exhibition is two major but rarely exhibited monumental paintings by Bierstadt, Autumn in the Sierras (Kings River Canyon) (1873), and The Landing of Columbus (1892), lent to the Museum by the City of Plainfield, New Jersey, where they have been for close to a century. (above left: Albert Bierstadt, Autumn in the Sierras (Kings River Canyon), 1873, oil on canvas, 72 x 120 inches, City of Plainfield, New Jersey)

Primal Visions spans the period from Bierstadt's first trip to the West in 1859, to the "closing of the frontier" in the 1890s. In addition to the Plainfield works, Primal Visions includes approximately fifty paintings, prints, and photographs by Bierstadt and his contemporaries, including Thomas and Edward Moran, Frederic E. Church, and Eadweard Muybridge, which dramatically place the Plainfield paintings within the context of the period. (right: Albert Bierstadt, The Landing of Columbus, 1892, oil on canvas, 80 x 120 inches, City of Plainfield, New Jersey, Gift of J. Ackerman Coles, 1919)

Primal Visions: Albert Bierstadt "Discovers" America will close at the Montclair Art Museum on February 3, 2002, and will tour to the Columbus Museum of Art, Columbus, Ohio, from February 28th to May 12th, and the E. B. Crocker Art Gallery in Sacramento, California, from June 1st through July 22, 2002.


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For further biographical information on selected artists cited above please see America's Distinguished Artists, a national registry of historic artists.

This page was originally published in Resource Library Magazine. Please see Resource Library's Overview section for more information. rev. 5/28/11

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