October 27, 2015 - January 10, 2016
Member Tickets >>
We've seen this remarkable exhibition now on view at the world-renowned Philadelphia Museum of Art and we can assure you -- you will experience the simple beauty of everyday things in a new light.
The first survey of American still life in three decades, this exhibition offers 130 oil paintings, watercolors, and works in other media representing the finest accomplishments in the genre. Featuring masterpieces by John James Audubon, the Peale family, William Michael Harnett, Georgia O’Keeffe, Andy Warhol, and others, this exhibition explores American still life from its beginnings in the late 1700s to the Pop Art era of the 1960s.
The show invites you to enter into the paintings -- to bring your own human presence into the scene; to discover every aspect of each rendering; to delight in the details and the lush indulgences of these vivid works which have helped to define American art.
Taking a fresh approach to the subject to reveal the genre’s astonishing variety, the exhibition presents four distinct eras of American still life, each defined by a unique culture of seeing objects: describing, indulging, discerning, and animating. Within these sections, visitors are encouraged to explore still life as a reflection of American identity and culture through time.
Still life is generally an art of intimacy, intended for display in homes and other private settings. From the perfect serenity of tabletop compositions created by Raphaelle Peale (1774–1825), to the trompe l’oeil illusions of William Michael Harnett (1848–1892), to the explosive floral abstractions of Arthur B. Carles (1882–1952), still lifes provoke the senses and reward close looking. The exhibition employs theatrical displays and interactive technologies to encourage substantive, personal encounters with the works.
The genre has a special connection to our region: Philadelphia artists first defined American still-life practice and remained at its forefront well into the twentieth century. This exhibition is the first to explore this distinctive aspect of American still-life painting.
Enjoy these samples from the exhibition and get your tickets now!