FORT WORTH, Texas, Dec. 19, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Amon Carter Museum of American Art announces the acquisition of a landmark painting by acclaimed 20th-century artist George Bellows (1882–1925). The Fisherman (1917) is the first painting by Bellows to enter the collection; the museum already holds a set of 230 lithographs by the artist. The painting is on view beginning December 21 alongside a lithograph of Bellows' iconic A Stag at Sharkey's (1909).
"This is one of the museum's most significant acquisitions in the last 10 years," says Andrew J. Walker, executive director of the Amon Carter. "Bellows is perhaps most famous for his gritty depictions of early 20th-century New York urban life, but he was equally adept at depicting the powerful force of the American landscape. This fascinating painting adds invaluable depth to our collection and will surely become a visitor favorite."
Bellows began painting seascapes in 1911, creating over 250 paintings inspired by the water, which he referred to as his "eternal subject." In 1917, he spent the summer visiting the scenic outlooks of Big Sur and Point Lobos in Carmel, California, where he painted en plein air. While there, he created The Fisherman, considered "one of the last important oils of the sea" by Bellows according to scholar Michael Quick.
"In this bold, dramatic painting Bellows used his signature exuberant brushstrokes and thick oil paint along with a palette of brilliant hues to depict the raw power of the ocean," says Shirley Reece-Hughes, curator of paintings and sculpture. "The subject of the lone fisherman trying to harness nature suggests the ethos of the physical and ideological manhood of Bellows' generation that stemmed from President Theodore Roosevelt's belief in the 'strenuous life.' "
The painting fills a gap in the Amon Carter's painting collection between the 19th-century realist tradition and the 20th-century modernist movement, says Brett Abbott, director of collections and exhibitions. "Bellows embraced traditions of 19th-century realism, yet infused them with vigorous dynamism and experimental color theories that aligned with the avant-garde," says Abbott. "The acquisition of The Fisherman follows the Amon Carter's history of collecting exceptional artworks created by artists during westward sojourns; it represents the first painting of a West Coast scene to enter the collection by a key figure in the history of American art."
Tracy Greene at 817.989.5067
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SOURCE Amon Carter Museum