Impressionism Abroad: Boston and French Painting
2 July — 11 September 2005
In The Sackler Wing of Galleries, Burlington House
This exhibition explored the popularity of Impressionism in 19th-century Boston. Significant Impressionist paintings were held in public and private collections and local artists, many of whom had trained in France, had adapted Impressionism to American subject matter. There were many reasons for this, three of which were of particular importance. Firstly, Boston artists and collectors already appreciated French Barbizon School painting with which Impressionism shared important similarities of subject matter and approach. Secondly, American artists explored Impressionism and encouraged wealthy Bostonians to add Impressionist paintings to their collections. Thirdly, Japanese woodblocks and paintings were popular with many of Boston's important collectors. Impressionists were also enthusiastic about Japanese art. Bostonians who were familiar with Japanese art could see, and appreciate, its influence on Impressionism.