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Norton Museum Celebrates New York City with Exhibition
Andreas Feininger (American, born France, 1906–1999): Brooklyn Bridge, 1940s. Gelatin silver print, 15 ½ x 19 ¼ in. Gift of Wysse Feininger in memory of her husband Andreas, 2000.53. ©Andreas Feininger, gift of Feininger family, courtesy Bonni Benrubi Gallery, NYC.

WEST PALM BEACH, FL.- Founded by the Dutch as New Amsterdam in 1624, New York City was renamed by the English in honor of the Duke of York. Originally consisting only of Manhattan Island, it was re-chartered in 1898 to include the five present-day boroughs of Manhattan, the Bronx, Brooklyn, Queens and Staten Island. New York: The 20th Century invites Museum visitors to explore and celebrate the incomparable life, architecture and landscape of New York City.

Conceived as a counterpoint to the current exhibition also on view, George Segal: Street Scenes, New York, New York: The 20th Century features over 50 paintings, photographs, sculptures and works on paper that capture New York’s unique metropolitan sphere and the human interaction with it. The artistic interpretations and documentations of this remarkable city range in style and date from Childe Hassam’s American Impressionism to Edward Hopper’s American Scene Painting and Edward Steichen’s Tonalist Photographs to the large-scale Contemporary photographs of Jeff Chien-Hsing Liao.

The imagery in New York, New York is centered on some of the most notable and beloved features of the city which can be seen in each of the five themes. “On the Waterfront” pairs the docks and shipping industry, as seen in Andreas Feininger’s 1940 photograph of the Brooklyn Bridge, with views of the Hudson, while “Avenues and Streets” transports the viewer to the sidewalks of New York, from Wall Street to Fifth Avenue. Central Park, the most visited city park in America, is prominently represented throughout “In the Park,” with examples such as a bronze head of Alice by José de Creeft from the famous Alice in Wonderland sculpture. “On the Town” features some of the seemingly endless possibilities for entertainment in the city, such as an art opening by William Gropper featuring brightly colored, fashionable people who are not looking at the art—typical of his social realist style of depicting the hypocrisies of the classes. Finally, “Tall Buildings” highlights the very core of New York, the steel and stone of its buildings, uniquely portrayed by Stuart Davis’ New York Mural which has at its center the newly constructed engineering marvel, the Empire State Building.

New York | George Segal | Andreas Feininger | William Gropper |

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October 3, 2009

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