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Posts Tagged ‘The Bird Cage’

The Bird Cage, 1910. Frederick Carl Frieseke (1874-1939). Oil on canvas, 32 x 32 in. New Britain Museum of American Art.

Frederick Carl Frieseke (1874-1939) was an American Impressionist Painter who was part of the Giverny group, but until recently was not very well-known. Frieseke was born in Owosso, Michigan, in 1874 and, from a young age, he was interested in many forms of art. He first began studying art at the Art Institute of Chicago, but he also studied in New York and in France. While Frieseke studied only briefly under James Abbott McNeill Whistler (1834-1903), he was perhaps more influenced by Whistler than any of his previous instructors. He was most inspired by Whistler’s use of gradation of color. Other influences on his work included the flat and decorative features of the Art Nouveau style. Frieseke himself also stated that “no artist in [the Impressionist] school has influenced me except, perhaps, Renoir.” (more…)

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Today, we’ll have a look at the artworks in the American Impressionism Gallery situated on the first floor of the New Britian Museum of American Art.

The Bird Cage, ca. 1910. Frederick Carl Frieseke (1874–1939). Oil on canvas, 32 x 32 in. New Britain Museum of American Art, John Butler Talcott Fund, 1917.02

Beginning with Mary Cassatt (1844-1926), American artists responded with enthusiasm to the paintings of the French Impressionists Claude Monet (1840-1926), Pierre-Auguste Renoir (1841-1919), and Edgar Degas (1834-1917). Their loose brushwork and informal subjects, coupled with bright primary colors, appealed to Theodore Robinson (1852-1896), Childe Hassam (1859-1935), John Twatchman (1853–1902), Willard Metcalf (1858-1925), and others, whose canvases capture the impression of light and atmosphere. The more sophisticated among them were aware of optical effects and the relationships between complementary colors. While some Americans chose to remain in France, others, like Hassam, returned to New York, and soon, by their example and through their teaching, inspired generations to come. (more…)

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