Since the late eighteenth century, the Adirondacks—first characterized as a “Dismal Wilderness” and then a “Sportsman’s Paradise”—has challenged cartographers, scientists, sportsmen, travelers, and artists. In a volume that covers nearly three hundred years of artistic achievement, Adirondack Museum curator Caroline M. Welsh includes essays that were originally presented at the 1995 North American Print Conference at the Adirondack Museum. Comprehensive in scope and lavishly illustrated, the book embodies the artistic spectrum from the documentary to the aesthetic.
Paintings of Adirondack scenery were frequently reproduced as prints. Lithographs after original paintings disseminated affordable fine art to a broad middle class, exemplifying a pervasive nineteenth-century faith that art.
By 1850, this northern expanse became a sanctuary for artists. Inspired by the drama of the landscape, the purity of the light, and the grandeur of its rugged wilderness, artists flocked to the region. From Winslow Homer, Dr. Arpad Gerster, and the French naturalist Jacques Gerard Milbert to Canadian artist David Milne, Adirondack Prints and Printmakers underscores the importance of the wilderness landscape in American art and culture and the role that prints have played to document, promote, and celebrate the Adirondacks.
Caroline Mastin Welsh is chief curator and curator of art at the Adirondack Museum. She has written and lectured on the subject of Adirondack art and artists, curated exhibits on Adirondack art, and is working on a directory of Adirondack artists.
Series: Adirondack Museum Books
8 x 9, 240 pages, 82 black and white illustrations, 10 maps