Nature and the American Vision: The Hudson River School

Hudson River School - About the Exhibition

Drawn entirely from the premier collection of The New-York Historical Society, Nature and the American Vision: The Hudson River School features forty-five outstanding American landscape paintings from the nineteenth-century. Among the artists represented in the exhibition are the heroes of the American landscape movement: Thomas Cole, Asher B. Durand, and Albert Bierstadt, among others. Also included are lesser-known artists, some of whom helped the American landscape achieve recognition through the new democratic medium of prints and portfolios.

Arranged thematically by place, the exhibition is designed as a grand tour of the American landscape. The full range of the exhibition demonstrates that the movement extends beyond the Hudson River, with work by artists who reflect both realistic and romantic attitudes toward nature in scenes of New England, the American West, and even to South America.

The exhibition culminates with Thomas Cole’s masterpiece, the five large-scale paintings that constitute The Course of Empire (1834–36), a visual feast and meditation about civilization and the potential challenges facing the young country. 

Join now and see it free, or reserve a ticket.

This exhibition has been organized by the New-York Historical Society.
This exhibition is supported by an indemnity from the Federal Council on the Arts and the Humanities.
 

In-kind media partner: 

Hudson River School - Highlights

Sunset, Lake George, New York

Jasper Francis Cropsey
1867
Oil on Canvas
The Robert L. Stuart Collection, S-126 

Cayambe

1858
Frederic Edwin Church 
Oil on canvas 
The Robert L. Stuart Collection, S-91 

The Course of Empire: The Arcadian or Pastoral State

Thomas Cole
c. 1834-1836
Oil on canvas
New-York Historical Society, Gift of The New-York Gallery of the Fine Arts, 1858.1 

Niagara Falls

Louisa Davis Minot
1818
Oil on Linen
New-York Historical Society, Gift of Mrs. Waldron Phoenix Belknap, Sr., to the Waldron Phoenix Belknap, Jr., Collection, 1956.4

The Course of Empire: The Consummation of Empire, 1836

Thomas Cole
c. 1835-1836
Oil on canvas
New-York Historical Society, Gift of The New-York Gallery of the Fine Arts, 1858.3

 
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Hudson River School - Membership

Members see it free

A ticket to Nature and the American Vision also includes admission to Pierre Huyghe and Samurai: Japanese Armor from the Ann and Gabriel Barbier-Mueller Collection.

Members at the Student and Individual levels receive one free ticket. Dual-level members receive two free tickets. Members at the Friend level and above receive two free tickets per day, with no limit on the number of visits.

Members receive more than just free tickets—check out enhanced benefits for some of our levels:

  • Friend and above receive an invitation to Art 101: Introduction to American Art and the Hudson River School (March 21, 2015)
  • At the Partner level, members receive all of the above enhanced benefits, plus an invitation to a curator-led tour of the exhibition (February 12, 2015)

Join now.

Upcoming Member Events

Member Mondays: Extended evening hours of select exhibitions, including Nature and the American Vision, just for members.

More Events...

Hudson River School - Video

Nature and the American Vision: The Hudson River School
A conversation with Linda S. Ferber, senior art historian and museum director emerita at the New-York Historical Society.