The First Art Newspaper on the Net   Established in 1996 United States Monday, April 23, 2018

Deacon Robert Peckham's recently attributed Hobby Horse is celebrated with focus exhibition
Robert Peckham, The Hobby Horse, c. 1840. Oil on canvas, 103.5 x 101.6 cm (40 3/4 x 40 in.). National Gallery of Art, Washington, Gift of Edgar William and Bernice Chrysler Garbisch.

WASHINGTON, DC.- One of the most intriguing and often-reproduced American paintings in the collection of the National Gallery of Art is the inspiration for Deacon Peckham's "Hobby Horse"—a focus exhibition on view on the Ground Floor of the East Building from May 27 through October 8, 2012.

"Peckham's Hobby Horse is one of the most beloved works in the Gallery's renowned American collection," said Earl A. Powell III, director, National Gallery of Art. "We are grateful to the American Folk Art Museum, the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation, the Fruitlands Museum, Historic New England, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, and the private collectors whose works help us to shed new light on the artist."

The Exhibition
When The Hobby Horse (c. 1840) was given to the Gallery in 1955 by Colonel Edgar William and Bernice Chrysler Garbisch, the artist's identity was unknown, but decades of research led to a formal attribution to Robert Peckham (1785–1877) in 2009. Along with this important painting, the exhibition brings together for the first time eight of the most vibrant and arresting of Peckham's portraits of children from four museums and several private collections. The subjects are from the families of Peckham's neighbors and community, a newly thriving class of Massachusetts merchants and manufacturers in the mid-1800s. A hide-covered, Boston-made rocking horse from the 1850s, similar to the one in the painting and lent by Historic New England, will also be included in the exhibition.

The portraits of children that Peckham made in the 1830s and 1840s are fewest in number, but certainly the most compelling of his works. Depicted sympathetically, with a striking sense of immediacy and no hint of Victorian sentimentality, his young subjects engage the viewer directly and intently. In works such as Rosa Heywood (c. 1840, Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Museum, Williamsburg, Virginia), The Raymond Children (c. 1838, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York), and The Farwell Children (c. 1841, American Folk Art Museum, New York), the children are highlighted by a single source of light and tightly enveloped within the interiors or in corners of their homes, imparting a psychological intensity to their images.

These paintings also provide a detailed record of the costumes and furnishings of the time. Colorfully patterned carpets, wallpaper, fashionable tables, lamps, toys, and books reflect the growing affluence of antebellum New England as the economy expanded from agriculture into manufacturing.

To accompany the exhibition of works by Peckham, a selection of related works from the permanent collection are included in an adjacent gallery. These works are just a few of the more than 300 American naive paintings that were given to the Gallery by Colonel Edgar William and Bernice Chrysler Garbisch between 1953 and 1980. The Garbisches collected 18th- and 19th-century portraits, landscapes, still lifes, and other subjects by artists who were largely self taught. They acquired these bold works both for the visual pleasure they afforded and for the historical documentation of American life that they provided.

Deacon Robert Peckham
Peckham began his artistic career as an ornamental and sign painter. With only a few months training in portraiture, he carved out a long and successful career as a portrait artist. He lived and worked in Westminster, Massachusetts, and produced numerous vivid likenesses—more than 50 are attributed to him—of people from the town and nearby centers.

In addition to his painting career, Peckham was an important member of his community—a longtime deacon in his Congregational Church, a staunch abolitionist, ardent temperance advocate, and father of ten. He had a long and productive life (he died at 92) and was endowed with much of the same creative energy that allowed his entrepreneurial neighbors to prosper.

Today's News

May 31, 2012

Wim Delvoye is second artist to create a new, monumental sculpture for the Louvre

Joan Miró masterpiece leads Sotheby's Impressionist & Modern Art Sales in London this June

Major exhibition of large-scale sculptures by Henry Moore opens at Gagosian Gallery in London

Tate announces major gift of a group of British works from Mercedes and Ian Stoutzker's collection

Deacon Robert Peckham's recently attributed Hobby Horse is celebrated with focus exhibition

New discovery at early Islamic site in Jordan: Uncovered inscription reveals name of Umayyad prince

Getty Museum acquires fourteen photographs by famed fashion photographer Hiro

The Next Big Show: "Radcliffe Bailey Memory as Medicine" at the McNay Art Museum in San Antonio

Is one of America's leading potters related to the family of potters who owned him as a slave?

The Academy selects acclaimed architects Renzo Piano and Zoltan Pali for museum

Major summer auction at the Hôtel des Ventes, Geneva: Quality and diversity take pride of place

Most important work by Tyeb Mehta from his groundbreaking Mahishasura series to lead Christie's sale

Jamaica seeks heritage status for sunken Port Royal: The "wickedest city on earth"

Nationalmuseum announces new acquisition: Queen Lovisa Ulrika's memorial cup

Original painting of famous Pears Soap image hanging in primary school for sale at Bonhams

Wayne Newton denies museum developer allegations

Eisenhower family: Impasse on memorial design

9/11 first responders and recovery workers honored at museum

South African president withdraws case

Most Popular Last Seven Days

1.- Boy and an amateur archaeologist unearth legendary Danish king's trove in Germany

2.- Exhibition at The Met illustrates what visitors encountered at The palace of Versailles

3.- Philadelphia Museum of Art opens "Modern Times: American Art 1910-1950"

4.- Exhibition at Michael Hoppen Gallery presents a cross-section of works from Thomas Mailaender's career

5.- New York's Chelsea Hotel celebrity door auction raises $400,000

6.- Stevie Ray Vaughan's first guitar drives Entertainment & Music Memorabilia Auction to nearly $2.9 million

7.- Lichtenstein's Nude with Blue Hair tops $2.4 million sale of Modern & Contemporary Prints & Multiples

8.- $6.7 million Fancy Intense Blue Diamond sets auction record at Sotheby's New York

9.- Mexico court blocks sales of controversial Frida Kahlo Barbie doll

10.- Dutch museums to conduct new research on the paintings of Pieter de Hooch

Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .


Ignacio Villarreal
Editor & Publisher:Jose Villarreal - Consultant: Ignacio Villarreal Jr.
Art Director: Juan José Sepúlveda Ramírez

Royalville Communications, Inc
Founder's Site. The most varied versions
of this beautiful prayer.
to a Mexican poet.

The First Art Newspaper on the Net. The Best Versions Of Ave Maria Song Junco de la Vega Site Ignacio Villarreal Site
Tell a Friend
Dear User, please complete the form below in order to recommend the Artdaily newsletter to someone you know.
Please complete all fields marked *.
Sending Mail
Sending Successful