Gustave Wolff: An Impressionist Eye for New York, at the Wichita Art Museum

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New York landscapes by St. Louis-born American Impressionist Gustave Wolff (1863–1935) will be featured in the upcoming exhibition Gustave Wolff: An Impressionist Eye for New York, on view at the Wichita Art Musum from May 13 through August 5, 2012. Paintings in the exhibition have been drawn from the holdings of Hawthorne Fine Art, and are accompanied by a catalogue available in print and on the HFA website.  The catalogue contains introductions by Jennifer Krieger and Stephen Gleissner, Chief Curator of the Wichita Art Museum; many reproductions of Wolff’s paintings; and an essay titled, “Urban Nature: Gustave Wolff, American Impressionist in New York.”

Additionally, the Wichita Art Museum will celebrate the Wolff exhibition at a New York-themed reception during their free Final Friday art crawl on June 29, from 5:00 pm to 8:00 pm!

Influenced by his teachers Paul Cornoyer and Frederick Oakes Sylvester, as well as the New York-based artist and teacher William Merritt Chase, Wolff developed his unique style of painting by combining the light-filled leisure scenes of American Impressionism, the atmospheric effects of the Dutch Hague School, and the search for beauty in urban life of the early twentieth century.

Wolff relocated to New York City after his early training in St. Louis and travels in Europe, including the Netherlands. A well-known artist in the Midwest and successful exhibitor at the Paris Salons, Wolff was relatively unknown in New York upon his arrival in the early 1910s. However, he exhibited frequently in New York and maintained a painting style that incorporated influence from the burgeoning urban realist movement while remaining loyal to the vibrant light effects and animated brushwork of Impressionism. Most importantly, Wolff continued to depict what he loved: the natural beauty that he was able to discover amid his urban life in New York.

The Wichita Art Museum is excited to celebrate these lesser-known but extraordinarily vibrant works by Gustave Wolff. The Museum’s Chief Curator, Stephen Gleissner, believes, “An installation of Wolff’s paintings adjacent to the Museum’s permanent collection of Impressionist art allows the visitor a fully-rounded view of the subjects and scenes of Impressionism, including the contrast between the bustling and correspondingly brightly-colored Manhattan views of Guy Wiggins, and the suburban New York views of Gustave Wolff, characterized by carefully balanced compositions, subtle color harmonies, and an air of calm and ease touted as a tonic for the complications of urban life.”

More information on the Wolff exhibition can be found on the Wichita Art Museum’s website.


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