The Washington Post

National Gallery announces major show of George Bellows

The first full retrospective in more than three decades of American artist George Bellows will open at the National Gallery of Art next year, the museum announced Thursday.

“Blue Morning”by George Bellows (Courtesy of National Gallery of Art)

“Both Members of This Club” by George Bellows (Courtesy of National Gallery of Art)

“We want to establish a more expansive view of Bellows. He was a hugely ambitious painter, yet he is known in a very narrow way. This is a survey of his entire career. You can misunderstand Bellows if you look at him too narrowly,” said Charles Brock, associate curator for the gallery’s American and British paintings. “We want to introduce him to new generations.”

Bellows was a complicated artist and individual, often underappreciated. “Look at the way he depicts New York. In our Chester Dale show we put Bellows’ “Blue Morning” between two works by Monet. You can see how innovative Bellow was in terms of color and concepts of the city,’ said Brock.

His influence needs to be restated, said Brock. He was born about the same time as Picasso . “This generation navigates the transition to the modern world. Bellows essentially keeps alive the figurative representative traditions into the modern era. Edward Hopper is the heir to that, “ Brock said.

After the National Gallery show from June 10 to October 8, “George Bellows (1882-1925)” will travel to the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York and the Royal Academy of Arts in London.


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