Connecticut Impressionist Art Trail


Treasures from The Connecticut Impressionist Art Trail: Connecticut's Millennium Legacy Trail


The Connecticut Commission on the Arts has organized a celebratory exhibition, Treasures from The Connecticut Impressionist Art Trail: Connecticut's Millennium Legacy Trail, at the Old State House in Hartford through October 28, 2000. Nominated by governor John G. Rowland, the Impressionist Art Trail was recently designated by the White House Millennium Council as Connecticut's Millennium Legacy Trail. Connecticut's Art Trail is a unique partnership involving ten museums and historic sites and is the only one of the fifty state legacy trails devoted to art.

The exhibition features several paintings from each site on the Art Trail and traces the American Impressionist art movement in Connecticut, widely considered to be its "birthplace." Drawn by the beauty and peace of Connecticut's shoreline and countryside, many prominent artists flocked to the state at the turn of the century to establish artist colonies in Cos Cob and Old Lyme. These sites and the Branchville farm of J. Alden Weir became critical to the creation of American Impressionism and are featured stops along the Art Trail. They are joined by art museums housing prime examples of the art that was embraced by turn-of-the-century America. The Farmington home of a collector of French Impressionism and a corporate collection of Connecticut impressionism famed for its breadth and quality complete the tour. (left: Willard Metcalf, Mountain Laurel, Courtesy New Britain Museum of American Art; right: Willard Metcalf, Summer in Hadlyme, Florence Griswold Museum)

"The designation of the Art Trail as Connecticut's Millennium legacy Trail is testament to the importance of art in our state's history," said John Ostrout, Executive Director of the state Commission on the Arts. "`We should all be very proud of Connecticut's seminal role in the establishment of a significant artistic movement recognized around the world. The Millennium Legacy Trail designation will help preserve this remarkable piece of Connecticut's heritage for generations to come." (left: Frank Dumond, Top of the Hill, Florence Griswold Museum)

Millennium Trails is a national initiative of the White House Millennium Council in partnership with the U.S. Department of Transportation and the Rails-to-Trails Conservancy to promote, enhance and construct trails across America that will connect communities for centuries to come. The nation's Governors nominated the fifty Millennium Legacy Trails.

The Connecticut Impressionist Art Trail is comprised of the Bruce Museum in Greenwich, Bush-Holly Historic Site in Cos Cob, Weir Farm National Historic Site in Wilton, Yale University Art Gallery in New Haven, Florence Griswold Museum in Old Lyme, Lyman Allyn Art Museum In New London, the collection of Hartford Steam Boiler Inspection and Insurance Co. in Hartford, Wadsworth Atheneum in Hartford, Hill-Stead Museum in Farmington, and New Britain Museum of American Art. (left: Frank Dumond, Grassy Hill, Lyme, 30 1/2 x 24 1/4 inches, Florence Griswold Museum, 74.9)

Hildy Cummings, noted authority on American Impressionism, organized the exhibition. Trained docents will be on hand at the Old State House to guide visitors. The Old State House is located at 800 Main Street in Hartford. Visiting hours are Monday to Friday, 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. and Saturday from 11 a.m. until 4 p.m. Admission is free. For more information about the exhibition, please call the Old State House at (860) 522-6766 or the Connecticut Commission on the Arts at (860) 566-4770.

Ed. One of America's earliest art centers was the Lyme Art Colony. See's data on 60 Old Lyme Colony painters. Other early Connecticut art colonies were at Cos Cob and Mystic. See also the Connecticut State Capitol Statuary Collection..

rev. 10/11/00, rev. 11/20/10

Please click on thumbnail images bordered by a red line to see enlargements.

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. 4/6/11

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