The National Academy Museum and School of Fine Arts

New York, NY



Charles Hawthorne: Watercolors

May 4 - July 30, 2000


Charles Webster Hawthorne (1872-1930), National Academician and founder of the Cape Cod School of Art, was one of the most celebrated American painters of the early twentieth century. Known mostly for his realist oil paintings ranging in subjects from Portuguese fishermen to fashionable ladies, the artist also produced a considerable body of work in watercolor. (left: Sunset Clouds, c. 1927-30, watercolor on paper, 9 7/8 x 13 7/8 inches. Courtesy of Babcock Galleries)

Under the tutelage of William Merritt Chase, NA, Hawthorne, along with fellow students Charles Demuth, Rockwell Kent, and Joseph Stella, NA Elect, became practiced at the progressive art of plein air painting. By 1889, the artist began to focus on a highly personal theme of simple, honest people captured in introspective moods, yet his dedication to traditionalism kept him from joining other socially conscience artists such as members of the Ashcan School. (right: The Cirque Gavarnie, 1929, watercolor on paper, 13 7/8 x 19 3/4 inches, Estate of Charles Hawthorne)

On view at the Academy through July 30, 2000, the exhibition marks the first time in over 20 years that a comprehensive grouping of Hawthorne watercolors will be exhibited in New York. In these watercolors, visitors will experience the more unconventional side of Hawthorne through his abstract simplification of the landscape. (left: On Board the S. S. Alessia, 1928-29, watercolor on paper, 10 x 14 inches. Courtesy of Babcock Galleries)

Curated by Paul Resika, NA, this selection of 25 paintings, on loan from private, public and the Hawthorne family collections, represents the artist's finest work in the medium from 1915 to 1930.

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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. 2/28/11

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