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For over 200 years, artists have been inspired to capture the beauty, violence, poetry and transformative power of the sea in American life. Oceans play a key role in American society no matter where we live, and the sea continues to inspire painters today to capture its mystery and power.
In American Waters reveals that marine painting is so much more than ship portraits. In this exhibition, visitors will also discover the sea as an expansive way to reflect on American culture and environment, learn how coastal and maritime symbols moved inland across the United States, and question what it means to be “in American waters.” Be transported across time and water on the wave of a diverse range of modern and historical artists including Georgia O’Keeffe, Amy Sherald, Kay WalkingStick, Norman Rockwell, Hale Woodruff, Paul Cadmus, Thomas Hart Benton, Jacob Lawrence, Valerie Hegarty, Stuart Davis, and many others.
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Image credit: William Trost Richards. Along the Shore, 1903. Oil on canvas. 39 3/16 × 78 1/2 in. Courtesy Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, Bentonville, Arkansas, 2009.1. Photography by Steven Watson.