Here, fifty paintings from the Arthur J. Phelan Collection trace more than a century of America's maritime and seaside history, transporting us from the Eastern to the Western Shores of the United States. Ranging in date from 1828 to 1945, the masterful renderings of sailboats, warships, waterside towns, waterscapes, and harbor scenes, and the playful portrayals of beach life encapsulate all facets of life on and via the water.
These works of art document changing trends in transportation and record economic shifts as inland maritime commerce slowly diminished in the wake of railroad expansion. The exhibition also illustrates varying artistic trends that shaped American art. Represented are grand academic-style portraits of graceful naval ships and waterscapes from the sea to the American heartland, light-flooded impressionist visions of quaint seaside towns, and modernist renderings of industrialization and everyday life.