an American Master

an American Master

hey friends,

so while I was in New York City for the Williamsburg Independent Film Festival I had a bit of extra time on my hands. the screenings were all in the evenings, which meant I was free to explore the city during the day. last week I talked a bit about the “Discovering Columbus” exhibit. this week I’m going to talk about the George Bellows Retrospective that I visited at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

The MET is an immense and beautiful museum located on 5th Avenue just outside of Central Park. this was my second visit and I feel like I have only begun to scratch the surface of what they have to offer in their permanent collection.

on this visit I was there to see two special exhibits. the first was “Regarding Warhol.” it was a collection of his work and the work of others that were inspired by him. the exhibit would have been a good primer for someone unfamiliar with American “Pop Art” from the late 20th Century, but for anyone familiar with that movement – the collection was rather blasé. I had seen many similar pieces by the artist featured at other museums…and often BETTER examples of what they were trying to get across. it felt like a collection of artists “2nd best” work.

in some ways, I think this set me up for the experience I had in the George Bellows exhibit. I had just seen a pretty large where I had known enough about the artists to know that this was NOT a collection of their best work. it had reenforced my belief that I had a pretty good art knowledge. and then I walked in the Bellows gallery.

right away I was stunned.

the colors, the brush work, the subject matter.

the combinations of intensity and serenity.

the everyday folk going about their everyday lives presented in a beautiful and thoughtful manner.

I thought to myself “WHY DO I NOT KNOW THIS ARTIST?”

because his work contained so many of the styles and themes that resonate with me as a viewer and artist, I was shocked I didn’t already know of him. however, at the same time I was thrilled to be making the discovery of his work. it was like finding out that a casual friend shares so many interests with you that they are destined to become your BEST friend.

not only was I excited about discovering George Bellows – but I was also excited by the prospect of finding a “new” painter from the early 1900’s. I realized that if his work existed – then there were probably many other artists who’s work I had yet to see and appreciate. and that was a pretty great feeling. it made me thrilled to keep exploring and to keep seeking out new art and experiences.

here’s a link to the show at the MET.
here’s a link to Bellows’ wikipedia page.

and here are a few examples of his work.

City Dwellers

Emma and her children

The Big Dory

New York, 1911

Dempsey Fight

Winter Afternoon

so what have you discovered recently that has excited you?


1 Comment
  • Teal
    Posted at 17:13h, 29 November Reply

    oooh, these are lovely! Thanks for sharing!!

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