A Review of ‘Mirrored Images: Realism in the 19th and 20th Centuries,’ in …

“Mirrored Images: Realism in the 19th and 20th Centuries” is a modest show of around 50 works drawn from the permanent collection of the Heckscher Museum of Art in Huntington. Yet the exhibition suggests some of what has been at stake for painters engaged in the practice of realism. Depicting contemporary subject matter from observation could mean painting nature in “plein-air” — outdoors — which seemed fairly harmless, although it broke from the long studio tradition. But it could also mean highlighting the plight of workers and the poor; documenting the disappearing countryside as industrialization swept through Europe and the United States; or demonstrating how painting related to the then-new medium of photography.

The show is arranged chronologically, and actually starts well before the 19th century, with artists like Anthonie Verstraelen, whose “Winter Sport in Holland,” probably painted between 1630 and 1640,

Article source: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/02/24/nyregion/a-review-of-mirrored-images-realism-in-the-19th-and-20th-centuries-in-huntington.html

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