University Art Museum showcases vast collection

A major exhibition of American drawings and watercolors -- all from the Princeton University Art Museum's collection -- will open this month, showcasing important works by Mary Cassatt, John Singer Sargent, Georgia O'Keeffe, Winslow Homer, Benjamin West and Thomas Eakins.

"I think it's going to come as a surprise to people in this field that Princeton has a collection of this depth and richness," said John Wilmerding, the Christopher Sarofim '86 Professor in American Art, one of the exhibition's organizers. "People don't have the sense of the overall totality, the size and quality of this collection."

"West to Wesselmann: American Drawings and Watercolors in the Princeton University Art Museum" will be on display from Oct. 16 through Jan. 9 at the art museum.

The show, arranged chronologically, begins with West and John Singleton Copley, the so-called "old masters" of the late 18th century who inaugurated the academic tradition in American art with studies of allegorical and historical subjects. It includes one of the museum's most prized pieces, a sketchbook that contains more than 30 drawings by Thomas Cole, founder of the Hudson River School.

There also are two classic watercolors by major American masters, "Eastern Point Light" by Homer and "Seventy Years Ago" by Eakins. Works from almost all the members of the Ashcan School, a group of artists who followed Eakins' teaching in seeking to capture the dynamism and grittiness of urban life, will be on display. The show concludes with abstract master Jackson Pollock and pop artists Tom Wesselmann and Claes Oldenburg.

Read the full story , plus more on John Wilmerding , in the Weekly Bulletin.

Contact: Eric Quinones (609) 258-3601