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Join us in-person or virtually for this lecture by Dr. William L. Coleman, Director of Collections & Exhibitions at The Olana Partnership.
“The Poetry of Nature” includes a good representation of the range of creative voices, subjects, formats, and media that have come to be understood as “Hudson River School” since the lifetimes of their makers. In dialogue with the world-class permanent collection holdings of the NBMAA, this show presents a welcome opportunity to take stock. What gave rise to the marked surge in the production of, and demand for, realist representations of the natural world in the middle decades of the nineteenth century? Why did some makers of outwardly similar artworks see their names become legendary while others have languished in obscurity? Who was buying objects like these, and why? How can a thoughtful modern museum help these quiet old pictures to speak to a 21st-century visitor, no matter what knowledge and preconceptions they may bring about this art form? This talk will propose some answers.