American Art

American Painters

This is a brief overview of some of my favorite paintings by American artists.  Justice cannot be done in this short space to all of the wonderfully creative artists who have been Americans, so I feature my personal favorites.  My preference is Realism, so that is what is displayed here. 

John Singleton Copley

John Singleton Copley (1738-1815) was from Boston and he is the greatest painter of the colonial period. In 1774, already wildly successful with fortune and fame, he moved to London as the American Revolutionary War was incubating. He intended to return to America but never did.

"PAUL REVERE" BY JOHN SINGLETON COPLEY 1770
"PAUL REVERE" BY JOHN SINGLETON COPLEY 1770

William Sidney Mount

William Sidney Mount (1808-1868) was from New York, spending most of his career on Long Island.  He became well known for his scenes of everyday life, in particular with themes involving music.   He was the first famous American painter who stayed in America. 

"DANCING ON THE BARN FLOOR" BY WILLIAM SIDNEY MOUNT 1831
"DANCING ON THE BARN FLOOR" BY WILLIAM SIDNEY MOUNT 1831

George Caleb Bingham

George Caleb Bingham (1811-1879) was from Missouri and is known as the painter of the American Western Frontier.  His genre paintings were wildly popular in eastern America during his career, where many people clamored to see what the West looked like. 

"FUR TRADERS DESCENDING THE MISSOURI" BY GEORGE CALEB BINGHAM 1845
"FUR TRADERS DESCENDING THE MISSOURI" BY GEORGE CALEB BINGHAM 1845

Frederic Church

Frederic Church (1826-1900) was from Connecticut and a landscape painter of the Hudson River School, where he studied under Thomas Cole. In 1859 his painting The Heart of the Andes sold for $10,000—the highest price ever paid for a work of art by an American at the time.

"TWILIGHT WILDERNESS" BY FREDERIC CHURCH 1860
"TWILIGHT WILDERNESS" BY FREDERIC CHURCH 1860

Winslow Homer

Winslow Homer (1836-1910) was from Massachusetts and America's greatest watercolorist.  He first found success as a magazine illustrator in a career that would span 20 years.  During the American Civil War he was a pictorial reporter.  He lived in Maine, 75 feet from the ocean, the last 27 years of his life, and there became famous for his paintings of sea scenes. 

"SNAP THE WHIP" BY WINSLOW HOMER 1872
"SNAP THE WHIP" BY WINSLOW HOMER 1872

Edward Lamson Henry

Edward Lamson Henry (1841-1919) was from New York City and very popular in his day as a genre painter of historical scenes from American life.  He studied in Paris under Courbet with Monet and Renoir.  Though not a painter of their stature, his contemporaries treated his paintings as historic reconstructions because of his great attention to detail. 

"FIRST RAILROAD TRAIN" BY EDWARD LAMSON HENRY 1892
"FIRST RAILROAD TRAIN" BY EDWARD LAMSON HENRY 1892

Henry O Tanner

Henry O. Tanner (1859-1937) was the first renowned black painter.  He was from Philadelphia, where he studied under Thomas Eakins.  He moved to France in 1891 and lived the rest of his life there.   He achieved fame primarily due to his religious paintings (his father was a pastor). 

"THE BANJO LESSON" BY HENRY O. TANNER 1893
"THE BANJO LESSON" BY HENRY O. TANNER 1893

Frederic Remington

Frederic Remington (1861-1909) was from New York and is the painter of the American Old West. He also was a sculptor and writer. Remington was one of the few artists who actually traveled throughout the Old West as it was disappearing. He illustrated a book for Theodore Roosevelt as well.


"THE STAMPEDE" BY FREDERIC REMINGTON 1908
"THE STAMPEDE" BY FREDERIC REMINGTON 1908

Grant Wood

Grant Wood (1891-1942) was from Iowa and created the most iconic of all American paintings.  He specialized  in scenes of the rural Midwest United States and was part of the Regionalism Movement, which is Realist Modern Art.  His favorite painter was Jan van Eyck.

"AMERICAN GOTHIC" BY GRANT WOOD 1930
"AMERICAN GOTHIC" BY GRANT WOOD 1930

Edwin Hopper

Edwin Hopper (1882-1967) was from New York and his favorite painter is Rembrandt. He lived most of his life in Greenwich Village, and achieved lasting fame as a Realist painter. Hopper was extremely influential to future American artists.


"NIGHTHAWKS" BY EDWIN HOPPER 1942
"NIGHTHAWKS" BY EDWIN HOPPER 1942

Andrew Wyeth

Andrew Wyeth (1917-2009) was from Pennsylvania and a fabulously popular painter with the American Public.  His father was an artist and by age 21 Wyeth was already a success as a painter of Realism, a school in opposition to Abstract Art.  Though disdained by art critics, his works are displayed in the major museums of the United States. 

"CHRISTINA'S WORLD" BY ANDREW WYETH 1948
"CHRISTINA'S WORLD" BY ANDREW WYETH 1948

Norman Rockwell

Norman Rockwell (1894-1978) was from New York City and became one of the most famous American painters. He first achieved fame through the 321 covers he created over a period of 47 years for the magazine, Saturday Evening Post.


"GIRL WITH BLACK EYE" BY NORMAN ROCKWELL 1953
"GIRL WITH BLACK EYE" BY NORMAN ROCKWELL 1953

American Art

I have previously published six Hubs about art including Rembrandt,

Renaissance Paintings, and

Impressionism Art.

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Comments 70 comments

Vladimir Uhri profile image

Vladimir Uhri 7 years ago from HubPages, FB

Great pictures, James. Thanks.


samanthagardner profile image

samanthagardner 7 years ago from Palm Beach Gardens, FL

I just love the Hudson River School. Thanks for the hub.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

Vladimir! Thank you for winning the prize as my first visitor! And you are most welcome, my friend.


greatAmerican profile image

greatAmerican 7 years ago

Nice pics, just gotta love that American Gothic..


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

samanthagardner— Your face is a work of art in itself! :D

Seriously folks: The Hudson River school produced much beloved art. I love it, too. Thank you for your comments. And welcome to the Hub pages Community!


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

greatamerican— I do love it! Though I have seen it so many times, on closer inspection, much more is there. Thank you for your comment.


Kebennett1 profile image

Kebennett1 7 years ago from San Bernardino County, California

"CHRISTINA'S WORLD" BY ANDREW WYETH 1948 And "THE BANJO LESSON" BY HENRY O. TANNER 1893 will look beautiful on my wall! You have an eye for art! Do you have any art by new artists? Say over the last five years? If so who? I have been browsing Art.com and their are so many beautiful pieces to choose from.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

kebennett1— Yes, I do. I reviewed them on my Hubs entitled "Art in my Home" and "Fine Arts."

Thank you very much for your compliment. I agree that the two you chose are wonderful creations.


Ralph Deeds profile image

Ralph Deeds 7 years ago

Great choices. Hopper is my favorite.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

Ralph,

I agree. That painting by Hopper evokes so much inside me as a former "nighthawk" myself. It is my favorite in this gallery.

Thanks, buddy, for checking it out and leaving word.


douglas 7 years ago

A very nice summary of American masters, James.

There is a wonderful museum in New Britain, Connecticut dedicated to American artists. I believe the name is Museum of American Art.


Bail Up ! profile image

Bail Up ! 7 years ago

Great Choices James. Loving the American Gothic !


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

douglas— How I appreciate the ongoing support of a busy man such as yourself—marathon runner and all! :-)

I believe you are right and everyone should pay a visit.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

Bail Up!— Welcome to Hub Pages! I just bookmarked your Profile Page so I may peruse your work tomorrow. I absolutely LOVE your avatar (family photo). Thank you for visiting.


jiberish profile image

jiberish 7 years ago from florida

They are all wonderful, my favorite is Remington. I will go back and read your other Hubs on art. I will bookmark.


steve rensch 7 years ago

I am embarrassed about my ignorance of American art. Thanks.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

jiberish— You know . . . I love that Remington. I first selected a little known painting of an Indian squaw freezing her butt off in deep winter. And it is a GREAT painting. But then, while researching his life story I ran across this painting and . . . I thought . . . one rarely sees aqua so used by an artist. I had to use it. :D

Thank you for visiting and commenting. I just now bookmarked your profile page so I may peruse your work tomorrow.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

steve rensch— Don't be. Most people are and I know this. That is the very reason I published this Hub, Brother. Because American artists get the short-shrift, generally.


ethel smith profile image

ethel smith 7 years ago from Kingston-Upon-Hull

I like the last couple of paintings the best. Hubby has a book with some stunning reproductions of American art portraying American Indians. I was thinking of trying to scan some but they are large. Interesting hub James


advisor4qb profile image

advisor4qb 7 years ago from On New Footing

Norman Rockwell is hilarious! I love that one!


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

Ethel,

Do you know who the artist is that painting the Indians? JQ

Thank you for your support and your comments.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

advisor4qb— I do too! He had quite a sense of humor. A lot of nice detail in there; and I dig the color of that floor. Thanks for your comment.


maven101 profile image

maven101 7 years ago from Northern Arizona

Interesting and informative Hub, Thank you...

I love the painting by Bingham...struck me as ironic the little cat tied to the prow of the bateau being manned by fur traders...

We are privileged to own an oil by Les Lambson, a wonderful American artist...Have you seen his work..?


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

maven101— I was not aware of Lambson until now. I just went and viewed some of his art—gorgeous, shimmering.

You know, that cat really struck me, too. And he is tied—as if he was going to jump in the water. Me thinks not. :)

Thanks for visiting and leaving your remarks. I appreciate it.


bill yon profile image

bill yon 7 years ago from sourcewall

I'm a artist myself,and norman rockwell has always been my favorite.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

bill yon— Cool! It is a pleasure to meet another artist. I admire and enjoy Rockwell's work. Most critics don't like it—too sentimental they say. Thanks very much for leaving word here today.


ecoggins profile image

ecoggins 7 years ago from Corona, California

Unbelievable Hub! We tend to underestimate the quality of American art. Thank you.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

ecoggins— Why, I thank you, sir, for your kind words. These are some pretty good paintings. I appreciate the visit.


katyzzz profile image

katyzzz 7 years ago from Sydney, Australia

Wonderful and fascinating paintings, I love them all, James.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

katyzzz— I am glad you enjoyed them. Thank you for your kind comments.


gusripper profile image

gusripper 7 years ago

Great work my friend,these painters belong to worlds best of all times


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

gusripper— Thank you very much! I appreciate your encouraging words. :D


Dolores Monet profile image

Dolores Monet 7 years ago from East Coast, United States

I love to look at your art hubs and stop by to looks at all the beautiful paintings. Last year (or so) I went to DC to check out the Hopper show and realized, once again, how you really have to see paintings in person to appreciate them. The light in his paintings is so beautiful, so rich, I just stood in front of some of them for so long, entranced.


Linda Myshrall 7 years ago

I'm a pulp art fan who finds herself drawn to the Hopper painting... something about the colors, the people. Maybe it's just me. Once again you have not failed to inspire me to want to go searching for more knowlege. I'm going to have to quit looking at your hubs if I'm ever to get anything done... I'm off to google Henry O. Tanner. Thanks for the great hub, James.


DynamicS profile image

DynamicS 7 years ago from Toronto, Canada

James, very nice! Thanks for sharing. I like landscape painting, so my fav is 'Twilight Wilderness'

Great collection.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

Dolores Monet— I agree with you that the Hopper paintings have to be seen in person to appreciate them fully. Come to think of it, that applies to all of the paintings I have seen in person. I am always surprised at how beautiful they really are when I see the originals up close for the first time.

Thank you for your remarks. :D


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

Linda Myshrall— You are most welcome! Thank you for visiting. The Hopper painting evokes the loneliness of people after the bar closes— to me. Tanner is a recent discovery for me and I just love the tenderness of the old man patiently teaching the young boy.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

DynamicS— Thank you very much! I, too, love landscape paintings. I did consider a few more for this Hub, but I wanted to keep it small this time.


Melody Lagrimas profile image

Melody Lagrimas 7 years ago from Philippines

Very informative, and these paintings are simply marvelous.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

Melody Lagrimas— Thank you for visiting my Hub and leaving your kindly comments. :-)


Nemingha profile image

Nemingha 7 years ago

Thanks for expanding my knowledge of American Art, James. It's hard to pick a favorite though - each artist you have featured has such a different, unique style and his work should probably only be compared to his other works. I'm wondering though - where are the female artists?


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

Nemingha— That is a good question. I looked at Georgia O'Keefe's galleries and they were pretty flowers, mostly, that didn't quite strike me as these did.

I agree it is hard to pick a favorite with these distinctive styles. I am sure appreciate you for taking the time to visit and leave your comments.


Onusonus profile image

Onusonus 7 years ago from washington

What, no Arnold Frieberg? None the less excelent choices!


Royal Diadem 7 years ago

James your writings are so diverse in style and topics. I am use to reading your writings on Christianity, however I was really impress with your knowledge of American Art. Keep up the good work. Oh, I am so glad to have seen Norman Rockwell Painting up there. I remember him as a child his drawing on POST. Great Hub again


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

Verily, Verily I say unto thee: Friberg was one of two artists I had on the list (O'Keefe being the other) that I cut right at the end. I wanted to have 12 artists because, well . . . I have a thing for that number. :) I do love his art.

In the future, I will have to do American Art II because I had 6 or 7 other semi-finalists that got cut.

Thanks for reading and leaving your comment. Good choice for a missing artist in this collection!


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

Royal Diadem— I love that particular Rockwell. It is so funny! And it reminds me of country girls I knew who were scrappers. I enjoy most all his work.

Thank you for your kind comments. I have a variety of subjects that interest me most and these are those. :D


Patti Ann profile image

Patti Ann 7 years ago from Florida

Excellent choices. My mother is a professional artist so I will have to choose her for my number one. There are so many exceptional artists that it is hard to choose just a few.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

Patti Ann— Maybe you should do a Hub on your mother's art. I would enjoy viewing it. Thanks for visiting and commenting. :)


lizrenee44 profile image

lizrenee44 7 years ago from Missouri

Tnanks for the comment. I loved this hub, good work!


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

lizrenee44— You are welcome! I am so glad you enjoyed this fine art. :D


gpound profile image

gpound 7 years ago from Toronto, Ontario

Wow, thanks for that visual and informative treat!

glenn

http://hubpages.com/@gpound


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

gpound— You are welcome. Thank you for your visit. Welcome to the Hub Pages Community!


Peggy W profile image

Peggy W 7 years ago from Houston, Texas

Hi James,

Good choices all. The Museum of Printing History in Houston had an exhibit of 40+ Norman Rockwell Saturday Evening Post covers a few years ago and it was wonderful to see that much of a collection all displayed in one room.

Also our Museum of Fine Arts in Houston has a fairly extensive Remington collection of paintings.

As you say, it is always fun to see these things in person.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

Peggy W— Thank you. I would enjoy a Rockwell exhibit very much. Remington is an interesting artist. He painted several pieces I really like. I appreciate your visit. Always a pleasure to hear from you.


cosette 7 years ago

love the Wyeths, especially Andrew. we tend to forget about American painters...


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

cosette— Yes, we do. It was this curious neglect that sparked the idea of this Hub in me. Thank you for visiting and leaving word. Welcome to the Hub Pages Community!


WildEyes profile image

WildEyes 7 years ago

Excellent artwork here...very detailed and insightful. Thank you for posting it. :)


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

WildEyes— Thank you for visiting and your thoughtful comments. You are most welcome, too.


patful profile image

patful 7 years ago

You gave me a tour of American art, with a historical perspective. You make art education very easy to take. Wyeth, Remington, Rockwell, and Homer I knew about...but the others I needed to know about, too. Thanks.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 7 years ago from Chicago Author

patful— Thank you for coming to view one of favorite works. It was a joy to put together. I also appreciate your nice compliment. And you are welcome.


habee profile image

habee 6 years ago from Georgia

Great hub! Winslow Homer and Andrew Wyeth are my two favorite American artists. Thanks for sharing!


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

habee— Thank you! I love the work of those two artists, too. I am so glad you enjoyed this Hub. I appreciate you letting me know that you did. And you are welcome.


skeri profile image

skeri 6 years ago from United Kingdom

GEORGE CALEB BINGHAM, GRANT WOOD AND HENRY O TANNER ARE AWESOME!GREAT HUB!


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

skeri— You have excellent taste! Thank you very much for the visit and the compliments! Welcome to the Hub Pages Community.


mhuze profile image

mhuze 6 years ago from USA

I enjoy Homer, Wyeth, Rockwell, and Hopper's work very much.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 6 years ago from Chicago Author

mhuze— You picked some supreme paintings there. Thank you for the feedback. I appreciate it.


durban_legend 5 years ago

Found my way here googling to find out who painted the marvelous picture of the banjo lesson I just saw on HuffPo. Thank you for the answer... and as a bonus, a truly beautiful set of paintings, especially the intro (for me not being American) to Remington and Hopper.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 5 years ago from Chicago Author

durban_legend— You are welcome. I am well pleased that you found your way to my Hub. I love these paintings. The Tanner is perhaps my favorite. Thank you for letting me know that you appreciate my gallery.


dahoglund profile image

dahoglund 4 years ago from Wisconsin Rapids

You have an excellent selection of artists and paintings. I remember in my school days artists like Norman Rockwell were sneered at but has proved to be important.


James A Watkins profile image

James A Watkins 4 years ago from Chicago Author

I must admit that I have always loved Norman Rockwell paintings. I am well pleased to see him being reconsidered these days by the community of art critics that was pretty mean to him back in the day.

Thank you for visiting my Hub. I appreciate the kind compliments. :D

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