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"In Search of the Promised Land: Frederic Edwin Church"
2001-01-18 until 2001-03-18
Portland Museum of Art
Portland, ME, USA

From January 18 through March 18, 2001, the Portland Museum of Art will present a retrospective exhibition of works by Frederic Edwin Church, the most famous and distinguished American landscape painter of the 19th century, and the foremost member of the second generation of the Hudson River School. In Search of the Promised Land: Paintings by Frederic Edwin Church, organized by the Berry-Hill Gallery, New York, commemorates the centennial of the artistís death and the memorial Church exhibition held that year at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

In Search of the Promised Land comprises 44 paintings, most of them lent by museums and private collectors. Its features some of the artistís most memorable and monumental canvases including Niagara Falls from the American Side (1867) from the National Gallery of Scotland, and Morning in the Tropics from the National Gallery of Art. In addition to the large public works, the show covers a range of medium size and small, intimate but equally awe-inspiring pictures, which he created either as studies for the major works or as personal and highly skillful sketches.

Known at first for his ravishing views of domestic scenery, particularly of the Hudson Valley region, Church was a visionary painter who explored far-off places from the Arctic North to the South American tropics to the exotic Near East. His magnificent home and studio overlooking the Hudson, which he called Olana--referring to the Latin name of a treasure-storehouse in Persia near one of the presumed sites of the earthly Paradise -- is one of the architectural wonders of its time and is a melange of the Oriental and Moorish styles that he so admired.

The exhibition tour includes Berry-Hill Galleries, New York (April 25-July 15, 2000), Terra Museum of American Art, Chicago (August 4-October 1, 2000), Portland Art Museum, Oregon (October 21, 2000-January 31, 2001), and the Portland Museum of Art (January 18-March 18, 2001).

The fully illustrated catalogue accompanying this exhibition features an essay by noted Church expert Dr. Gerald L. Carr. The catalogue is available in the Museum Shop for $50.


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