Staff Picks: Across the Atlantic: American Impressionism through the French Lens

Time is running out to pick your favorite painting on view before Across the Atlantic: American Impressionism through the French Lens closes on June 9, 2019. Here are a few from our staff.

Charles Rosen (American, 1878 – 1950),  Across the River,  1909, oil on canvas, Museum Purchase Reading Public Museum, Reading, Pennsylvania

Charles Rosen (American, 1878 – 1950), Across the River, 1909, oil on canvas, Museum Purchase Reading Public Museum, Reading, Pennsylvania

“Charles Rosen's Across the River is among my favorite works in the exhibition. I like the japanese-influenced composition, in which the slender, sparsely-leaved trees dominate the foreground and extend beyond the picture plane. There is an abstract, decorative quality in his treatment of landscape while his brushstrokes convey a sense of movement. The composition combines with the muted palette to create a calming escape into nature. His signature hints at his affinity for the decorative; it seems to echo font treatments associated with the Arts & Crafts Movement and/or Art Nouveau.”

—Courtney Taylor, Curator and Director of Public Programs

 
Cecilia Beaux (American, 1855 – 1942),  Portrait of Judith Brooks Knight ,   1907, oil on canvas, Museum Purchase Reading Public Museum, Reading, Pennsylvania

Cecilia Beaux (American, 1855 – 1942), Portrait of Judith Brooks Knight, 1907, oil on canvas, Museum Purchase Reading Public Museum, Reading, Pennsylvania

“My favorite piece in the Impressionism exhibition is the Cecilia Beaux (1855-1942) Portrait of Judith Brooks Knight (1907).  I like that Beaux was the first full time teacher at the Pennsylvania Academy. Her loose sketchy brushwork is amazing up-close. The direct face forward gaze of Judy Brooks Knight is very feminine yet bold; and, I like that Beaux paints her with an unadorned body with a neutral expression. ”

—Nedra Hains, Director of Development and External Affairs

 
Nancy Maybin Ferguson (American, 1862 – 1967),  Market Day,  1915, oil on canvas, Gift, George D. Horst Reading Public Museum, Reading, Pennsylvania

Nancy Maybin Ferguson (American, 1862 – 1967), Market Day, 1915, oil on canvas, Gift, George D. Horst Reading Public Museum, Reading, Pennsylvania

“I love the marketplace scene in Nancy Maybin Ferguson’s Market Day ! I like it because it captures what city life was like in that time period.”

—LeAnn Russo, Museum Store Manager & Membership Coordinator

 
William Merritt Chase (American, 1849 – 1916),  William Merritt Chase’s original palette and brush,  wood and oil paint, Gift, William Ferguson Reading Public Museum, Reading, Pennsylvania

William Merritt Chase (American, 1849 – 1916), William Merritt Chase’s original palette and brush, wood and oil paint, Gift, William Ferguson Reading Public Museum, Reading, Pennsylvania

“The Original Palette and Brush of William Merritt Chase is my favorite because I find the process of making art sometimes more interesting and fascinating than the final work. It makes me think about their thought process...why they chose those colors or imagine what what going on in the mind of the artist. Also how these extraordinary paintings started as simple globs of paint on a palette. It’s interesting also to me how Chase passed this palette and brush down to the next generation of artists, encouraging them in a way to use these traditional tools to explore and experiment like he did. It makes me reflect and appreciate the skill and working process of these artists (and artists in general).”

—Sarah Amacker, Communications Coordinator

 
Fred Wagner (American, 1860 – 1940), Delaware Canal, by 1926, oil on canvas, Museum Purchase Reading Public Museum, Reading, Pennsylvania

Fred Wagner (American, 1860 – 1940), Delaware Canal, by 1926, oil on canvas, Museum Purchase Reading Public Museum, Reading, Pennsylvania

“Delaware Canal by Fred Wagner makes me think of the start of something new because of the buildings and shipments. The snow is there as an obstacle and to me it shows they are working through harsh conditions for the sake of the future.”

—Sandil Joseph, a CSRS sponsored sophomore at Cristo Rey High School interning at the LSU Museum of Art. 

 
John Fulton Folinsbee (American, 1892 – 1972), Winter Nocturne, 1926. oil on canvas, Gift in Memory of Miriam Murray Boynton by Her Friends Reading Public Museum, Reading, Pennsylvania

John Fulton Folinsbee (American, 1892 – 1972), Winter Nocturne, 1926. oil on canvas, Gift in Memory of Miriam Murray Boynton by Her Friends Reading Public Museum, Reading, Pennsylvania

“I like Winter Nocturne by John Fulton Folinsbee because I miss the weather up north. Reminds me of a place with all four seasons complete with a snowy winter!”

—Jordan Hess, Preparator

 
Paulette Van Roekens (American, 1896 – 1988),  Towers In The Mist , 1925, oil on canvas, Museum Purchase Reading Public Museum, Reading, Pennsylvania

Paulette Van Roekens (American, 1896 – 1988), Towers In The Mist, 1925, oil on canvas, Museum Purchase Reading Public Museum, Reading, Pennsylvania

“Paulette Van Roekens Towers in the Mist is one of my favorite paintings to talk about during a tour. Roekens, who described herself as a “sometimes impressionist’, was a prominent painter and educator who taught for over 40 years at Moore College of Art. Shifting from the gardens and forests of the northeast, Roekens describes American impressionism through purple-misted streets, towering buildings, and the gray bustle of Philadelphia. Students marvel at the way an overcast painting can still portray light—the glowing haze in the sky and the glint of streetlight in a puddle.”

—Grant Benoit, Educator