Main Exhibit

Rhode Island Artists in 19th Century Paris Salons

Taking a Look: 2007 Theme series

Opens January 16th thru February 17th

Bert Gallery located along the Providence waterfront at Corliss Landing, 540 South Water Street, commences the taking a look 2007 Theme Series with the topic Rhode Island Artists in 19th Century Paris Salons from January 16th thru to February 17th. Gallery Hours are Tuesday – Friday from 11 – 5 pm, Saturdays 12 – 4 or by appointment. Exhibits are free and open to the public.

Bert Gallery is concentrating on a series of themes in 2007 exploring various topics in the art world that highlight works of art by artists and impact a collector’s selection. Last year the Boston Museum of Fine Arts documented the exodus of artists to Paris ateliers in the exhibit Americans in Paris, 1860 - 1900. Like other American painters, many Rhode Island 19th artists did their art training abroad at the Julian Academy and the Ecole des Beaux Arts working hard to gain acceptance into Paris Salon exhibits. Only a few succeeded achieving this goal but many did return home securing a highly regarded career as a result of their European study.

Visit the gallery and find out about Rhode Island artists such as Stacy Tolman, Sydney Burleigh, Sarah Chapin and others to see who succeeded and who did not in the salon environment. Discover how Rhode Island artists finessed their European education into an art profession at home. View paintings, documents and photos at Bert Gallery on the artists’ experience on foreign soil.

Art instruction abroad impressed 19th century American art buyers and when accepted into the Paris Salon an artist’s talent was further validated. Two examples of Rhode Island natives who went abroad and succeeded were George Hitchcock and Walter Francis Brown. On the contrary, S.R. Burleigh, a remarkable Rhode Island water colorist in Paris studying from 1878 – 1880, was never selected for a Paris Salon.

However, upon returning home at a critical time in Providence’s art development, he was instrumental in challenging the art colony to move beyond the parochial and embrace international movements such as Arts and Crafts. The narratives of artists such as Hitchcock, Brown and Burleigh are but a few to be explored at the gallery this January and February.