American Art and Modernity, 1865–1965

, Arthur M. Sackler Museum
Above patches of green appears a blue mountain, crowned by rose-colored cliffs. Blue clouds arch across the white sky.

Arthur M. Sackler Museum

Exploring developments in American art between the Civil War and the Cold War, this installation accompanies a course that examines works by artists such as Winslow Homer, Mary Cassatt, John Marin, and Arshile Gorky. Themes include the role of nature and landscape in the exploration of modernism; the incorporation of scientific and industrial processes into artistic practice; the tension between abstraction and representation in the struggle to define national life; and new methods of understanding subjectivity in the face of urbanization, mechanized reproduction, and mass consumerism. The course is taught by Jennifer L. Roberts, Professor of History of Art and Architecture, Harvard University.
The installation is made possible by funding from the Gurel Student Exhibition Fund.
Teaching gallery installations are mounted in conjunction with Harvard University undergraduate and graduate courses and feature selected objects from the Harvard Art Museums collections. Coordinated by Amy Brauer, Diane Heath Beever Curator of the Collection, Division of Asian and Mediterranean Art, Harvard Art Museums.