Last night I visited the MFA in Boston with Nicks mom. We had a great time exploring the new Contemporary Wing, the Art of Europe, and the rooms upon rooms of colonial furniture. But my absolute favorite floor is the 19th century and early 20th century galleries in the Art of the Americas wing. The MFA has a such a strong holding of these paintings- many of them by artists from Massachusetts and the city of Boston including one of my favorite artists- Winslow Homer. Seeing his work each time that I visit is like making a visit to an old friend. You didn’t miss them while you were apart, but the reunion always makes you happy and reminds you of your fondness…
You might not know him by name, but I will bet you are familiar with at least one of Winslow Homer’s paintings. Winslow Homer is best known for his scenes depicting American life. Unlike so many of his contemporaries, Homer was not sitting in stuffy rooms doing portraiture for the wealthy elite. He began his career as an illustrator for Harper’s Weekly and eventually branched out to other mediums, traveling around New England and the rest of the world. His scenes are of pastoral life and fishing towns. My personal favorite are the sailboats. He captures a simpler time in America, one that I think all of us wish to escape to, which is a large part of his paintings’ appeal.
a few favorites from the MFA’s collection:
This last one is absolutely one of my favorite paintings in all of the museum. “Gloucester, Mackerel Fleet at Sunset”. It is in an undecorated corner at the back of the room, but the glowing golds and purples draw you in from a room away. I am completely mesmerized every time I see it, and love to imagine sitting there at the time he was painting it, watching the sun set and the boats sail by.