Society & Culture

Georgia Museum of Art to exhibit American watercolors from the permanent collection

Athens, Ga. – The Georgia Museum of Art will exhibit a selection of American watercolors from its permanent collection from May 14 to Aug. 7, in an exhibition organized by Paul A. Manoguerra, chief curator and curator of American art. Due to the fragile nature of these works, most of which were executed on paper, they are not often displayed in the museum.

“The permanent collection at the Georgia Museum of Art includes several stellar examples of watercolors by American artists. This special display presents our patrons with the opportunity to enjoy works by some American masters of the medium,” said Manoguerra.

While some of these images were exhibited occasionally before the expansion of the museum, this collection features two brand-new acquisitions. Acquired in 2010, Howard Thomas’ “Third Ward” (1943) and Raymond Peers Freemantle’s untitled watercolor (“Horse and Cart in Town Scene,” ca. 1930s or 1940s) have never been displayed in the museum.

Three of the watercolors were part of the original collection of 100 works donated by Alfred Heber Holbrook in 1945 to establish the museum. Holbrook was the founder and first director of the museum and a driving force behind its success. The works are Frederic Remington’s “Ashtrakhan Cossacks” (ca. 1894), John Marin’s “Mountain and Meadow, Hoosic Mountains, Massachusetts” (1918) and William Zorach’s “Maine Lake at Dawn” (1926).

Many of the other works have not been exhibited since the museum’s reopening in January, although five are featured in the its recently published book One Hundred American Paintings, by Manoguerra, which coincided with the reopening. One of these paintings, Robert Bechtle’s “Palm Spring Chairs” (1975), will be displayed for the first time since its loan to the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art for its exhibition “Robert Bechtle: A Retrospective” in 2005.

Some of the painters used these watercolors as drawings or compositional studies. Other works, including “Palm Spring Chairs,” are the intended finished products.

This exhibition is sponsored by Kathy Prescott and Grady Thrasher, YellowBook USA, the W. Newton Morris Charitable Foundation and the Friends of the Georgia Museum of Art and will be on view in the Lamar Dodd Gallery of the Georgia Museum of Art.

Museum Information
Partial support for the exhibitions and programs at the Georgia Museum of Art is provided by the Georgia Council for the Arts through appropriations of the Georgia General Assembly. The council is a partner agency of the National Endowment for the Arts. Individuals, foundations and corporations provide additional museum support through their gifts to the Arch Foundation and the University of Georgia Foundation. The Georgia Museum of Art is located in the Performing and Visual Arts Complex on the East Campus of the University of Georgia. The address is 90 Carlton Street, University of Georgia, Athens, Ga. 30602-6719. For more information, including hours, see or call 706/542-4662.