This post comes to us from Gina Ciralli, Curatorial Intern.
“What he loved best were the pastures of Southern New England in the later autumn after the deciduous trees had shed their leaves and great white oaks and graceful birches stood singly or in groups on gently rolling meadows or moorlands with here and there a glacial boulder or granite ledge out-cropping above the soil.” – Artist Nelson C. White about his father Henry C. White, 1954
Nelson Holbrook White’s (b. 1932) survey exhibition Scenic Spirit is currently on display at the New Britain Museum of American Art. Nelson’s grandfather, Henry Cooke White (1861-1952) was an acclaimed American painter and member of one of America’s most distinguished art colonies in Old Lyme, Connecticut. From Frederick Childe Hassam (1859-1935) to Willard L. Metcalf (1858-1925), the colony comprised upwards of 200 artists during its three decades of creating nature-based scenes in oils and pastels. Inspired by French artists Claude Monet (1840-1926) and Pierre-Auguste Renoir (1841-1919), the colony defined American Impressionism by commemorating the tranquil aspects of rural New England life through use of vibrant palettes and broken strokes on wood and canvas.