The Belle Époque Today: An American Experience at the National Gallery, London

Tuesday, May 10, 2011


George Bellows
The National Gallery, London

The National Gallery in London recently unveiled twelve important American paintings never before seen in Britain. The work of George Bellows and his association of fellow artists known as the “Ashcan Painters”—William Glackens, George Luks, John Sloan and their teacher Robert Henri—are the masters behind these distinctly American canvases. Predominantly comprised of painters from New York and Pennsylvania, the Ashcan School rose in prominence in the early Twentieth Century and caught the attention of the public with their progressive ways of showing the speed, violence and starkness of the emerging modern society.

Seven of the twelve paintings in the exhibition are by Bellows himself and show his knack for depicting urban scenes. Similar to the works of British painters of the time period, these works are an interesting glimpse into a rare, but familiar, malaise with the changing world. The exhibition--An American Experiment--runs until the end of May. For more information, visit the Web site of London’s National Gallery.


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