The following 1997 essay was written by Southern art historian Estill Curtis Pennington for the illustrated catalogue Celebrating Southern Art, ISBN 1-890021-02-4. The introduction to the essay was written by Kevin Grogan, Director:of the Morris Museum of Art, to accompany Resource Library's reprinting of the essay. The text and illustrations are reprinted with permission of the Morris Museum of Art. Selected illustrations from the catalogue are included with this reprinting. We wish to extend our appreciation to Laurie Lockliear from the Morris Museum of Art for gathering and sending the text and images to Resource Library. If you have questions or comments regarding the text, or wish to obtain a copy of the catalogue, please contact the Morris Museum of Art through either this phone number or web address:


Collected Additions: The Morris Museum and Painting in the South

by Estill Curtis Pennington



Introduction by Kevin Grogan, Director:
"The article that follows originally appeared in a publication, Celebrating Southern Art, that marked the fifth anniversary of the Morris Museum of Art. Now, with the museum's fifteenth anniversary looming ever-larger on the horizon, we view the growth of the Morris from a somewhat different perspective. For one thing, the Morris no longer stands alone. It has been joined by others -- most notably the Ogden Museum of Southern Art in New Orleans -- in its efforts on behalf of the art and artists of the American South. That fact alone, however, identifies what is, perhaps, this museum's greatest accomplishment: it has succeeded in establishing institutional legitimacy for an important aspect of American cultural studies that was once thought dismissible. Buck Pennington provides here a very interesting introduction to the intellectual foundation upon which this institutional effort was made in identifying the method --"the considerable dialogue" -- employed in the building of the museum's collection. That method is employed still. He also notes, rightly, that it has been, from the outset, the Morris Museum's goal to provide "a variety of lenses through which we may view the art of the South." This, too, remains a bedrock principle at the museum, as does our operating assumption that there are many Souths, populated by many peoples all of whom make a continuing contribution to its vital, diverse, and distinctive culture."


Five years after the opening of the Morris Museum, a re-examination of the circumstances attending the creation of the permanent collection seems in order. In 1989 William S. Morris III purchased some 230 paintings from Dr. Robert Powell Coggins of Marietta, Georgia. Coggins, a passionate collector, had previously traveled 106 of these works to several institutions. As "Art and Artists of the South," it toured extensively in the same era as "Painting in the South," an offering from the Virginia Museum.[1]

Broad, and rather antiquarian in interest, the Coggins collection as purchased focused primarily on the period from 1840 to 1940, between portraiture of the antebellum period and the provincial regionalist efforts of artists working between the wars. With this core in place, it was determined to create a collection which began in the late eighteenth century and moved into the present day, encompassing the rise of painting schools in the coastal urban areas and culminating in the distinctly original, highly diverse efforts of artists working in the South today.

From the outset, there has been considerable dialogue on what artists and art objects could appropriately be added to the collection. In its larger intellectual implications, this dialogue conjures a conflict between a constraining historical determinism and the formalist, new critical approach: can an object be classified by identifiable characteristics of the area from which it emerged, or should regard be based on the expressive formal values of the object without concern for point of origin?

In the past fifty years many art historians, following the example of Oliver Larkin and working in the American studies discipline, have sought to identify prevailing themes in American popular culture which are reflected in American art objects. Landscape art of the Hudson River School has come to be seen as a manifestation of a growing scientific awareness of the effects of natural light as points of transition upon the terrain, and as evidence of the influence of the Transcendental writers' belief in romantic hopefulness. Many now see the art of the West as an illustration of manifest destiny and rugged individualism, for good or ill. The so-called Regionalist artists of the 1930's may exemplify a fecund nativism struggling against the challenging arrival of international non-objectivism.

Each of these views is a lens through which we can see more clearly, and in greater detail, the works we behold in museums, galleries, and historical society collections. From the outset, it has been the goal of the Morris Museum to provide a variety of lenses through which we may see the art of the South. Never has one single lens been offered through which we might see all objects in the permanent collection as "Southern art." As a collection, the Morris Museum's holdings offer a historical survey of painting activity in the South, seeking to pinpoint activity, discern material culture, and identify schools of style perpetuated by individual teachers, schools, or inspired individuals working outside the mainstream.

At the same time, many of the objects which have been added to the collection do reflect certain ideas about the visual culture of the South which have found wide acceptance elsewhere in the field of Southern studies.[2] "Mysterious tides move in the direction of attention," E.P. Richardson once commented.[3] In assembling and consolidating a collection of painting in the South, the Morris Museum of Art is seeking to sound out all currents, with discretion and attention to detail. Particular additions to the collection which reflect these tides of attention in the more historical areas of the museum's collecting concerns are here considered by category.



The history of painting in the South prior to 1861 is dominated by the record of a very rich, and varied, tradition of portraiture. The itinerant portrait artist, whether spontaneous visitor, as in the case of George Caleb Bingham, seasonal resident in the manner of Thomas Sully, or long-term resident like Charles Bird King, is a figure in the popular culture of the Old South who rivals the river boatman and the swaggering planter as a source for tall tales and legendary episodes. (right: George Caleb Bingham (attr.), The Twins, 1840, oil on canvas, 22 x 27 inches)

Portraits from the Coggins collection tend toward the more robust plantation styles of the 1840-1860 period. Therefore, the addition of a work in the crisper neoclassical style of Gilbert Stuart was deemed desirable. From a noted Maryland collection, a portrait by Philip Thomas Coke Tielyard was obtained on very eve of the museum's opening, too late for inclusion in the initial publication. It depicts a young man, posed in a painted klismos chair of a type familiar in Baltimore, turned in a slight curve against the flat parallel line of the picture plane. The uniformity of light and sharpness of detail are typical of the artist's work. Tielyard was certainly a mythic figure, possessor of a winning lottery ticket whose proceeds he misinvested in a business scheme, and who is said to have been driven mad from poverty and privation.[4]

Far more typical are the pair of portraits, found near Louisville, Kentucky, and executed in a formulaic style often associated with the central Kentucky portrait school of Matthew Harris Jouett and Joseph Henry Bush.[5] These pendants provide actual evidence of the portrait procedure. On the reverse of gentleman's portrait there is a chalked head centered, or "hung" (to use the English expression), in the upper right angle created by dividing the picture plane into quadrants. With their attention to the detail of the head and costume, and their lamentable anatomical concern, they are typical representatives of portraits commissioned all over the South in those days immediately preceding the rise of photography.

Though far better known for his work as a genre painter, George Caleb Bingham pursued a rather hectic itinerancy in the South between 1830 and 1853 working primarily in upper South areas of Virginia, Kentucky, and Missouri, with forays downriver to Natchez in the late 1830's.[6] His earliest portraits were executed in the flat geometric realism of the "plain painter" style. Unlike his more romantic contemporaries, Bingham does not soften contours or diminish lighting in facial modeling. Later in his career, after visits to Europe and success in America, his technique took on a more full-bodied character. The portrait of two boys was purchased from Robert Mayo, former director of the Valentine Museum in Richmond, Virginia, who provided a provenance associating the work with Petersburg, Virginia.

The acclaimed master of the period was Thomas Sully. Sully's youth was spent in the South, in Charleston, and he often returned there and to other Southern urban areas in search of portrait commissions.[7] The Sully portrait style, derived from the more romantic tastes of the English school, especially as seen in Benjamin West and Sir Thomas Lawrence, is warm, lush, and very flattering. In his writings, advising young painters, Sully admits that one can never flatter a subject too much, unlike Stuart, who advised against flattery.[8]



The addition of Harry Roseland to the permanent collection is an example of an artist who, while not having been born in the South or even spending much time there, painted an identifiably Southern theme. With the appearance of a popular print based on his painting, Reading the Leaves, in 1899, Roseland gained widespread note for his series of paintings of beautiful young Southern belles in full costume having their fortunes read by wise older black women. (right: Harry Roseland, A Bright Future, 1906, oil on canvas, 14 x 20 inches)

One such work, entitled A Bright Future, has been acquired for the Morris collection. As Roseland never extensively visited in the South, his genre paintings must have been derived from the romantic fiction of the period, by such popular authors as Thomas Nelson Page and Annie Fellowes Johnson, whose cavaliers and little colonels, wandering about in the moonlight amidst the fragrant magnolias, defied the onslaught of the Yankee reconstruction.[9] Though devoid of overt racism, Roseland's paintings do set up a fascinating and telling myth: the wisdom of age, as seen in the black fortune teller, imparted to youthful white beauty, in a squalid setting of poverty and decay. The symbolic elements of these paintings invites speculation on the Old South/ New South cultural dynamic. Are we observing an imaginary scene from the Old South, or a reconstruction episode? As personified by the beautiful belle, the Old South is seen costumed in the trappings of a distant society, seeking insight from an aged vestige of the very order from which she seems to have appeared, and to which she will seemingly return.

Any possibility that Roseland's fantasy is actually set in the antebellum world is dispelled by the presence of the dilapidated Empire sofa, surely a castoff from the "big house." This curious and evocative juxtaposition of innocence and experience, wealth and poverty, speaks to that longing for the wisdom of the noble outsider which haunts much of larger Western culture throughout the nineteenth century, from Robinson Crusoe to Huckleberry Finn.

By contrast, Josephine Sibley Couper's painting of a black nurse and white child derives from actual experience and is far more indicative of an artist painting from the subject matter at hand than evocative of any prevailing theme. Like her Southern contemporaries Helen Turner, Kate Clark, and Catherine Wiley, Couper sought out the Art Students League in New York as a training ground. Defying her family, she resorted to selling some of the property she inherited from her father to pay her way once she determined to leave her native Georgia.[10] (right: Josephine Sibley Couper, Untitled - Figure of a Woman and Child, oil on canvas, 20 x 16 inches. Gift of Mr. and Mrs. William H. Barnett)

Unlike Turner, Clark, and Wiley, Couper married and became a mother, which restricted her efforts as an artist. After 1913, she lived in Spartanburg, South Carolina, painting the highly approved, and terribly genteel, subject matter of mothers and children at play and rest. In these works, her appreciation of Impressionist color and brushwork is often set against somber backgrounds of the Munich School variety. After her husband's death in 1913, she moved to Montreat, North Carolina, where her palette, brushwork, and color sensibility became lighter and more spontaneous, in the post-Impressionist manner.



When Martin Johnson Heade made the acquaintance of Henry Morrison Flagler, the entrepreneurial vice-president of Standard Oil, in 1883, his pathway to the Deep South was set. Flagler soon invited Heade to visit Florida, where Flagler developed the Florida East Coast Railway and the coastal resort/ hotel scene. He also induced Heade to move South, becoming the artist's most significant patron.[11]

At 64, Heade married for the first time and settled in St. Augustine. There he found the tropical and semi-tropical landscape and flora to be inspiring subjects for his late efforts as a painter. It was the magnolia which truly captured the artist's genius. Heade's magnolias are like no other creation in still life painting in the South. Lustrous of leaf, languidly positioned, and overwhelmingly present on the picture plane, they achieve a symbolic as well as botanic illusionism.[12]

Some critics have read Heade's new-found sense of peace, stability, and romantic affection to be apparent in the comfortable placement of the preposterous blossom. Others, like John I. H. Baur, have seen in them subliminal references to the female form. Baur was taken by their "fleshy whitenessstartlingly arrayed on the sumptuous red velvet like odalisques on a couch."[13] The addition of a Heade magnolia to the Morris collection was a major goal, an acquisition which would connect the symbolic power of the magnolia as a Southern icon to the talents and insights of a major American painter.



Landscape painting seems a natural concern for the painter in the South considering the existence of the Southern agrarian economy for more than three hundred years. In the five years of collecting since the opening, the museum has sought examples of works by acknowledged masters. Lacking strong objects from the first two quarters of the nineteenth century prompted a strong search in that area. American painting from that period, dominated by the luminist movement, tends toward a form of landscape art which some art historians have termed "historical genre landscape." These paintings use the landscape, real and imagined, as a backdrop for everyday events or literary episodes.

John J. Porter was a resident of Culpepper County, Virginia, who seems to have pursued painting as a gifted amateur.[14] While he is an artist of more antiquarian than art-historical interest, his works have a lively quality of great charm. Often they are hunt scenes, based on English prints. In Slate Mills, Virginia, his landscape dwarfs the amusing genre scene of fishing by the river's edge.

William Tylee Ranney is one of the most noted landscape painters in American art history. His legendary depictions of Boone's first view of Kentucky and Francis Marion crossing the Pee Dee River were sensations of the time, preceding George Caleb Bingham and Emanuel Leutze in acclaim for similar subject matter.[15] The ferry crossing the Pee Dee River continues the tradition of water passage in Western landscape art. In the simple passage from shore to shore, Ranney combines elements of literary symbolism with elements of the natural world to create a scene which gently suggests the challenge of a frontier environment softened by the benign beauty of the splendid setting.

Joseph Rusling Meeker was a lingering practitioner of the historical genre style in an era when more naturalistic and realistic concerns were emerging as a dominant art aesthetic. Having served on a Union gunboat in the lower Mississippi River Valley during the war, he experienced the swamp terrain first hand, making several sketches of what he saw. Many of his subsequent paintings explore the mystery and wonder of remote watery settings, lit by a dramatic unearthly light.[16] (right: Joseph Rusling Meeker, Solitary Pirogue by the Bayou, 1886, oil on canvas, 17 3/4 x 30 inches)

His favorite theme, however, was the myth of Evangeline, the heroine of Longfellow's epic poem. That work tells of the tragic separation of two young lovers, Evangeline and Gabriel, in the French Canadian diaspora. The work which has been added to the Morris collection recalls that same saga. Against a backdrop of glowing sunset and murky swamps, a single pirogue has drifted against a small island. The solitary figure standing to the right recalls Gabriel, a "Voyager in the lowlands of Louisiana," where the "towering and tenebrous boughs of the cypress/ Met in a dusky arch," creating an atmosphere "dreamlike and indistinct."[17] Could this be his boat? Was it through "those shadowy aisles" that "Gabriel wandered before her?"

Meeker's painting has the tonalist concern with muted color and textural setting which springs from the French Barbizon School. The definitive practitioner of that school in the Deep South was Richard Clague from New Orleans. Clague had actually traveled to France in the 1850s, even joining the de Lesseps expedition to Egypt.[18] When he returned to Louisiana he created, in his short career, a series of landscape paintings which were far more concerned with the actual texture of place than with dramatic effect.

Clague often worked in a small scale, as in the case of the painting added to the collection. His palette is restricted to the close harmonics offered by a landscape almost perceptually shrouded in a heavy humidity. For even greater textural effect he often renders, in minute brushstrokes, contrasting shades of red and ochre onto the picture plane to highlight an aspect of a tree or vernacular structure, adding depth, perspective, and a recognizable volume to the mass.

John Martin Tracy, who worked on the Gulf Coast late in the century, combines that same Barbizon tonalist concern with a high Victorian narrative attempt in is painting of A Shepherdess. The landscape, with the billowing Spanish moss hanging from water oaks, is clearly Southern. The shepherdess is rather elaborately dressed for the Gulf Coast, though doubtlessly meant to evoke the simple joys of the rural environment.



One of the strongest commitments to collecting made by the Morris Museum of Art has been to the area of Impressionism in the South. Ironically enough, many artists working in the South appropriated a radical painting technique to a far more genteel end. The mood and atmosphere of Impressionism suited many painters' personal visions of the atmospherics and literary implications of the Southern scene, and it proved to be a style which lasted far longer in the Southern canon than elsewhere in the nation.

Gari Melchers, another artist born outside the South, brought an international style to the local scene. His entrée to the South came from his marriage to Corinne Lawton Mackall, of Savannah, in April 1903. Marriage to a Southerner did not insure Melchers a place in the small art world of the South. He was drawn South by two distinctly different sets of circumstances: the devotion his in-laws held for the Telfair Academy in Savannah, and the First World War, which forced the Melcherses to return to America permanently in 1915.[19] By 1916 they had found an old house, Belmont, near Fredericksburg, Virginia, where he would spend the rest of his life.

Melchers worked in Virginia at a time when the Old Dominion represented the spirit of the colonial revival to the national popular culture. As the Northeast and Midwest continued a pattern of industrial development, Virginia drowsed in a climate of mild agrarian prosperity. Melchers may not have found a land which time forgot in Virginia, but he did find a quiet, lovely corner of the world which he adored and which brought his final years peace, prosperity, and contentment. While completing important mural commissions for the Detroit Public Library and the Missouri State Capitol, he also painted intimate landscapes and genre scenes of friends and neighbors. Rainbow brings the full radiant light of Impressionism down upon that peaceful springtime scene.

Interestingly enough, the rise of Impressionism in the South also coincides with the emergence of several women artists of considerable talent. Elizabeth O'Neill Verner of Charleston and Catherine Wiley of east Tennessee have site-specific interest. Elizabeth Verner was a survivor. Following the death of her husband Pettigrew Verner in 1925, she determined to make her way as an artist. Verner was quite well trained. After graduation from the Ursuline Academy in Columbia, South Carolina, she attended the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, where she studied with Thomas Anshutz.[20]

Rarely did she attempt oils. This view of an oak alley coursing back from the picture plane toward a perfect little plantation house is a masterful example of vanishing perspective, sealing off the edges of the picture plane into a visual cul-de-sac, peopled by tiny black figures who seem totally dwarfed by their surroundings.

Catherine Wiley's life and career account for one of the more tragic episodes in the history of painting in the South.[21] As the daughter of conservative east Tennessee public servants, she overcame limitations of attitude toward the education of women in the arts by enrolling at the University of Tennessee in 1895. In keeping with the arts and crafts mentality of the era, her initial training, and first efforts, were illustrative, as though having an applicable craft would justify more iconoclastic ambitions. (right: Catherine Wiley, By the Arbor, 1923, oil on canvas, 26 x 30 inches. Purchased with funds from the 1996 Museum Gala)

In 1903 she enrolled in Art Students League classes in New York, coming under the influence of Frank Vincent Dumond, Robert Reid, and the illustrator Howard Pyle. After spending two years in New York she returned to Knoxville, where she took up teaching art in the Home Economics Department of the university. For the next twenty years she worked as a teacher and as a tireless organizer for regional art exhibitions. Several summers found her in the North, on Long Island, studying with the leading Impressionists of the day.

Wiley worked in the South at a time when the Impressionist style had fully permeated the region. Impressionism seemed the proper vehicle for communicating the complexities of local color. As Rich Stewart has pointed out, "many Southernartists of the period had an individual view that began with a highly developed sense of place, including the belief that the artist had to draw his material from his native area in order to achieve spiritual and artistic regeneration."[22]

Catherine Wiley is a genteel Impressionist, using a revolutionary technique to present proper people in fragile settings, gazing sensitively out of the picture plane, caught in the midst of quiet, tentative situations. Her work tends to follow the American Impressionist reluctance to completely dissolve the solid contours of figures or objects into brushy essays in light and color.

On several occasions between 1915 and 1925 Wiley sought admission to the National Academy of Design, experiencing rejection each time. Neither was she particularly successful in having her work shown outside rather limited regional settings. These frustrations seem to account, in part, for the mental collapse she suffered in 1926, after which she remained hospitalized for the remainder of her life, more than thirty years! Her illness was seldom discussed by her family, and no details have emerged as to her diagnosis or state of being after commitment.

Visual evidence, in her art work, does indicate a radical shift in technique after 1910. Her late works are far more technically daring, preoccupied with bravura brushwork and moving toward a highly abstract compositional format in which the entire observed environment does indeed dissolve into brittle patches of color. Close examination of a work will often reveal a solid blue, or blue-green ground, upon which the paint has been applied in very energetic, slashing brushstrokes. Hauntingly enough, in even her most idyllic works, human anatomy tapers off into a nothingness, so that otherwise conventional anatomical presentation is short-changed, with missing feet, and web-like hands, a most unusual development for an American Impressionist.

As is the case in of Van Gogh, these works seem autobiographical, studies in visual, and mental, disintegration. An oil sketch in the Morris Museum holdings is a chaotic mass of wild brushwork and broken color. Parallels with Van Gogh are striking. While no black crows gather on her horizon, light diminishes, standing beneath the arbor is beautiful but isolated, confined to a striking environment, yet stultifying, disengaged.

Madness becomes a very strong symbolic theme in Southern literature and drama just as Catherine Wiley is vanishing from the world into a remote northern hospital outside Philadelphia. In Faulkner's Absalom, Absalom, Miss Rosa Coldfield relates the Sutpen history to young Quentin Compson as an hysterical monologue. As though describing the imaginary dilemma besetting Wiley's figure beneath the arbor, Faulkner ironically alleges "beautiful lives women live -- women do. In very breathing they draw meat and drink from some beautiful attenuation of unreality in which the shades and shapes of facts -- of birth and bereavement, of suffering and bewilderment and despair ­ move with the substance-less decorum of lawn party charades, perfect in gesture and without significance or any ability to hurt."[23]

Eliot Clark's art is a late example of Impressionism in the South. Clark combined a personal color sensibility with the influence of his father, the American tonalist landscape painter Walter Clark. "As a child," he wrote, "I grew unconsciously in the association of artists, of studio talk and the smell of paint and turpentine."[24] Father and son were both taken with the color harmonics of J.A.M. Whistler. In many of Eliot Clark's works, his palette delves in shade and hue beneath primary values to rest in subtle variations of mauve and teal, contrasted with a shadowy gray. (right: Eliot Candee Clark, Savannah Oaks, oil on canvas, 31 3/4 x 40 inches)

In the mid-1920s, the newly married Clark and his wife spent two winters in Savannah, where he had been invited to teach at the Savannah Art Club. "The interlude was delightful. The picturesque city with its silvery Southern light, its many gardens, and ancient live oaks hung with gray moss, enchanted Eliot. During those Savannah winters he painted many of his finest works, the waterfront at twilight, old homes and landmarks, marvelous great trees, colorful warehouses in the half-light"[25]

Savannah Oaks was painted at that time.[26] Examination of the picture reveals that Clark has laid down his colors in tiny sweeping parallel lines over broad, expressionistic patches of yellow and orange, which heighten the tonal mood. The heavy impasto has an old master feel, recalling his father's pedagogy. On the other hand, the subliminal, hidden interior light recalls the more luminous efforts of the Barbizon school, especially Diaz de la Peña.

Robert Mackall, of Baltimore, was primarily known for his work as a muralist and stained-glass maker. He also created several easel paintings which summon the clear light of day into a peaceful interior setting. He did have ties with nearby Washington, where his work, Georgetown, is set. He was a member of the old Washington Arts Club, which occupies the former Dolly Madison House on Pennsylvania Avenue, opposite George Washington University.[27] That club counted amongst its members many of the Washington Impressionists. Solidarity and the dramatic contrasts between light and shadow endow the work at hand with a mellow panoramic feel. Within, we see the solid forms of furniture, musical instrument, and the well-appointed accessories of a beautiful room. Without, the bright light filtering through the trees permeates the room, resulting in a backdrop with just the feel of stained-glass lit by the direct rays of the sun. (right: Robert McGill Mackall, Georgetown, 1923, oil on canvas, 32 1/8 x 39 1/2 inches)

In the sometime small world of the South, Mackall was a cousin of Corinne Lawton Mackall, the wife of the painter Gari Melchers. "In fact Mr. Mackall's wedding receptionwas held at the Melchers' home."[28] Melchers's impact on Mackall's work may be only cursory, seen perhaps in the warmth of light, and the quietly beautiful gentility of the subject matter.

Though not an example of typical Impressionism, John Martin Tracy's Candidates for the Horse Show does have an Impressionist spirit. The landscape setting, particularly the trees in spring foliage, serves as a backdrop, an evanescent counterpoint to the solidarity of the horses. Tracy achieved great success with his views of Virginia sporting activity, as well as painting several works on the Gulf Coast.



The stylistic concerns of twentieth century painting in the South are a vast topic best addressed elsewhere. However, at least one painting, by Marie Hull, was added to the collection in recognition of its importance as a document of social history. By the twentieth century the back-breaking work of sharecropping, whether by black or white field hand, had become a topic for the painter's brush. (right: Marie Hull, Sharecropper, 1947, oil on canvas, 24 1/8 x 22 inches)

Throughout the 1920s, Marie Hull studied and traveled outside the South.[29] Her studies in New York with Frank Vincent Dumond and her sojourn in France in 1926 resulted in a familiar Impressionist style. Upon her return to Mississippi at the outset of the Great Depression she faced an agrarian society in economic collapse. With cotton prices at record lows, black and white tenant farmers faced that grinding poverty so poignantly recorded by Walker Evans in his photographic series, Let Us Now Praise Famous Men.

Inspired by the simple nobility of these farm workers, Hull created some of her most important works from personal observation, arranging sittings where she paid small amounts of money to the needy field hands who posed. These works were well received in the South as a form of benign realism, combining accuracy of detail with a subtle regard for the dignity of the sitter. One newspaper review in Jackson, Mississippi, noted that she had caught the farmer's "clear sharp eye and the indomitable spirit of a man who has known the sun and rain and seasons of hard work; slightly stooped by his toiling decades but strengthened rather than broken by them."



1. See Bruce Chambers, Art and Artists of the South, Columbia, South Carolina, 1984. See also Painting in the South: 1564-1980, Richmond: Virginia Museum, 1983.

2. In publications issued since the museum's opening, Lisa Howorth of the Center for the Study of Southern Culture at the University of Mississippi, and Randolph Delehanty of the Ogden Collection in New Orleans have both explored typological, comparative approaches to the topic of painting in the South. See Lisa Howorth, The South, a Treasure of Art and Literature, New York: MacMillan Publishing, 1993; and Randolph Delehanty, Art in the American South, Works from the Ogden Collection, Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 1996.

3. Edgar P. Richardson served as Director of the Detroit Institute of Arts, 1945-1962, as Director of the Henry Francis Dupont Museum at Winterthur, Delaware 1962-1966, and as a founder of the Archives of American Art. He was one of the first art historians in this country to examine American painting in the larger context of American studies.

4. Stiles Tuttle Colwill, "The Fine Arts in Classical Baltimore," in Classical Maryland 1815-1845, Baltimore, 1993, p. 75.

5. Edna Talbott Whitley's accumulation of images by artists working in central Kentucky can be found in Kentucky Ante-Bellum Portraiture, Richmond, Virginia: National Society of Colonial Dames in the Commonwealth of Kentucky, 1956.

6. The definitive publication on George Caleb Bingham is by E. Maurice Bloch, George Caleb Bingham: The Evolution of an Artist, Berkeley and Los Angeles, 1967. Bloch's book has an extensive bibliography. See also, Michael Quick, American Portraiture in the Grand Manner: 1720 - 1920, Los Angeles; Los Angeles County Museum of Art, 1981, pp. 154-155.

7. The actual manuscript listing Sully's portrait commissions, "Account of Pictures," is in the possession of the Historical Society of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, and has been edited and published by Edward Biddle and Mantle Fielding, The Life and Works of Thomas Sully, (1783 - 1872), Philadelphia, 1921. See also, Monroe H. Fabian, Mr. Sully, Portrait Painter, City of Washington D.C.: Smithsonian Institution, 1983.

8. See Thomas Sully, Hints to Young Painters and the Process of Portrait Painting as Practiced by the Late Thomas Sully, Philadelphia, 1873. Stuart's comments on painting were made to Matthew Harris Jouett and published in the appendix of William Barrow Floyd, Jouett-Bush-Fraser, Lexington, Kentucky, 1968.

9. For a discussion of Harry Roseland's work, and work by other late nineteenth century artists who specialized in black subject matter, see Guy McElroy, Facing History; The Black Image in American Art 1710 - 1940, San Fransisco: Bedford Arts and Washington D.C.: Corcoran Gallery of Art, 1990.

10. Dorothy Joiner, "J.S. Couper: An Art Historian's Perspective," in Josephine Sibley Couper 1867 - 1957 Daughter of the Old South/Artist in a Modern World, Museum of Arts and Sciences, Macon, Georgia, 1992, pp. 4 - 5. See also J.L. Sibley Jennings, Jr., "Emma Josephine Sibley Couper, A Family Perspective," in Macon catalogue, p. 27.

11. Listed in Theodore E. Stebbins, Jr., The Life and Works of Martin Johnson Heade, New Haven, Connecticut, 1975.

12. For a discussion of Heade's magnolia paintings in the context of their time, see Timothy A. Eaton, organizer, Martin Johnson Heade, Boca Raton, Florida, 1993.

13. John I. H. Baur, Commemorative Exhibition: Paintings by Martin J. Heade and F. H. Lane from the Karolik Collection in the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, 1953, unpaginated introduction.

14. Estill Curtis Pennington, Antiquarian Pursuits, Spartanburg, South Carolina, 1992, p. 42.

15. Estill Curtis Pennington, Passage and Progress, Augusta: Morris Museum of Art, 1993.

16. An extensive bibliography for Meeker can be found on page 84 of A Southern Collection, Augusta: Morris Museum of Art, 1992.

17. Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, The Collected Poetical Works, Boston, 1882, pp. 85 - 88.

18. Clague was the subject of a monographic exhibition at the New Orleans Museum of Art, which owns a large collection of his drawings. The most complete listing of primary and secondary materials on the artist is in the Historic New Orleans Collection's files on Louisiana painters.

19. See Richard S. Reid and Feay Shellman Coleman, Gari Melchers: A Retrospective Exhibition, St. Petersburg, Florida: Museum of Fine Arts, 1990.

20. See Elizabeth O'Neill Verner, Mellowed by Time, a Charleston Notebook, Charleston, South Carolina, 1970.

21. For a visual inventory of the artist's work, see Estill Curtis Pennington, Catherine Wiley, Genteel Southern Impressionist, Nashville, Tennessee, 1990.

22. Rick Stewart, "Toward a New South: The Regionalist Approach, 1900 - 1950," in Painting in the South: 1564 ­ 1980, Richmond: Virginia Museum, 1983, p. 106.

23. William Faulkner, Absalom, Absalom, New York, 1936, p. 211.

24. Eliot Clark, "Notes from Memory," American Artist, volume 21, number 6, June - August 1957, p. 72.

25. Margaret Clark, unpublished biographical manuscript on Eliot Clark, Eliot Clark Papers, Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.

26. Exhibited in "Moods of Yesterday: Eliot Clark in Savannah," Savannah: Telfair Academy of Arts and Sciences, April 5 - May 9, 1977, number 13.

27. See R.P. Harriss, "Maryland's Muralist Becomes a Medalist," Baltimore News American, February 1, 1981, p. 6 c; see also Virginia Yerby McNeill, "Picture Windows - Sixteen Months to Make," July 17, 1949, p. 10; and see Washington Arts Club Papers, Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C.

28. Maurice K. Heartsfield, Jr. ALS, January 2, 1996, Center for the Study of Southern Painting, Morris Museum of Art.

29. Marie Hull's papers, and the remains of her studio, are to be found in the holdings of Delta State University in Cleveland, Mississippi.

Read more articles and essays concerning this institutional source by visiting the sub-index page for the Morris Museum of Art in Resource Library.

Visit the Table of Contents for Resource Library for thousands of articles and essays on American art, calendars, and much more.

Copyright 2003, 2004 Traditional Fine Arts Organization, Inc., an Arizona nonprofit corporation. All rights reserved.