ABOUT THE EXHIBITION
Women Reframe American Landscape
Illuminating the artistic contributions and perspectives of women, this two-part exhibition includes the first retrospective of the nineteenth-century American artist Susie M. Barstow (1836–1923) and a presentation of contemporary works by artists Teresita Fernández, Guerrilla Girls, Marie Lorenz, Tanya Marcuse, Mary Mattingly, Ebony G. Patterson, Anna Plesset, Wendy Red Star, Jean Shin, Jaune Quick-to-See Smith, Cecilia Vicuña, Kay WalkingStick, and Saya Woolfalk. Engaging multigenerational perspectives, this exhibition recenters women in the canon of American art and expands how we think about land and landscape.
The nineteenth-century portion of this two-part exhibition includes the first ever solo exhibition and deep dive into the life and work of artist Susie M. Barstow (1836-1923), who exhibited and sold work alongside Hudson River School icons such as Albert Bierstadt, Frederic Church, and Asher Brown Durand, but has received little scholarly attention until now. A prolific and important artist in her day, major works by Barstow are on view, along with the artists sketches and materials and a selection of works by artists in her circle, including Julie Hart Beers, Fidelia Bridges, Charlotte Buell Coman, Eliza Greatorex, Mary Josephine Walters, and Laura Woodward.
In conversation with Barstow and her nineteenth-century circle, the exhibition features works by thirteen internationally-acclaimed artists, who draw upon diverse processes and perspectives to complicate and rethink our relationship to land and landscape today. Responding to and at times challenging historical narratives, many of the artists created unique, site-responsive installations for this exhibition.
Organized by the Thomas Cole National Historic Site in partnership with the New Britain Museum of American Art, this is one initiative among many to continually see landscape art in the United States as dynamic, multifaceted, and evolving. The exhibition is curated by Dr. Nancy Siegel, Professor of Art History at Towson University; Kate Menconeri, Chief Curator and Director of Curatorial Affairs, Contemporary Art, and Fellowship at the Thomas Cole National Historic Site, and Amanda Malmstrom, Associate Curator at the Thomas Cole National Historic Site. It is accompanied by a fully-illustrated catalogue published by Hirmer that includes essays by the curators, a conversation between Candice Hopkins and Jolene Rickard, texts and plates by the artists, and a timeline on women, land, and art. Additionally, the exhibition coincides with the first monograph on Susie M. Barstow authored by Nancy Siegel.
Saturday, November 18, 4:30-6 p.m.
Sundays at 1 p.m. | December 3-17, 2023; January 14, 2024 - March 31, 2024
Wednesdays, December 6, January 10 February 7, and March 13, 1-2 p.m.
Sunday, December 10, 2-3 p.m.
Distinguished Lecture | Saya Woolfalk
Sunday, February 25, 2-3 p.m.
Virtual Distinguished Lecture | Dr. Nancy Siegel: “An Uphill Climb, from Mountain Tops to Critical Acclaim: The Artistry of Susie M. Barstow"
Sunday, March 10, 2-3 p.m.
Women Reframe American Landscape is organized by the Thomas Cole National Historic Site in association with the New Britain Museum of American Art and is curated by Dr. Nancy Siegel, Professor of Art History at Towson University; Kate Menconeri, Chief Curator and Director of Curatorial Affairs, Contemporary Art, and Fellowship at the Thomas Cole National Historic Site; and Amanda Malmstrom, Associate Curator at the Thomas Cole National Historic Site.
Women Reframe American Landscape: Susie Barstow & Her Circle / Contemporary Practices is made possible by the Warner Foundation.
The project is supported by a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts, Wyeth Foundation for American Art, and Tavolozza Foundation. The exhibition and publication are also supported by Jennifer Krieger and Eric Siegel, Rick and Candace Beinecke, Marshall Field V, and Allan E. Bulley, Jr.
In New Britain, the exhibition is presented by the Kathryn Cox Special Exhibitions Fund and Kenneth L. Boudreau and Judith W. Boudreau. Additional generous support provided by Jay Bombara and Allison Reilly-Bombara, The Cheryl Chase and Stuart Bear Family Foundation, The Robert Lehman Foundation, and Marenda and Todd Stitzer.