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Art of the 19th-century American Frontier

From 19 January 2013 to 22 April 2013

A growing country, an artistic beginning

An exhibition at the Louvre is attempting to plunge visitors into the scenery of the American frontier at a time when the country was just beginning to take shape. The exhibition 'New Frontier II' specifically addresses paintings originating during the period between the first half of the 19th century up until the Civil War.

At this time, the U.S. nation was right in the middle of a major expansion, both in terms of its economy and its territory. The country's artists were reluctant to adopt the norms of academic European art movements, instead creating their own standards and aesthetics.

These artists — among them, Arthur Fitzwilliam and George Caleb Bingham — created a style all their own, and this style now characterizes the early American art culture. Nevertheless, these American artists were clearly influenced by the Dutch Golden Age as well as their contemporary British peers.

As a result, their paintings can be enjoyed for both their qualities of quaintness and hope as well as their artistic value. Perhaps unknown to modern audiences, such depictions of the American frontier were warmly welcomed during their time and are very well received even today. As the name would suggest, this exhibit is a sequel to the very successful New Frontier I, which explored similar themes.