Still life is a genre that transcends art movements. It is a timeless form of artistic expression that has been employed for centuries. From European masters Juan Sánchez Cotán and Rachel Ruysch to Americans Raphaelle Peale and Emil Carlsen, all represented in the permanent collection, still life has served as a means by which artists have proven their mastery of varying techniques, mediums, and styles. While a classic genre, still life allows for experimentation. It carries with it a duplicity—an enduring form of art that has, simultaneously, continued for centuries and across nations to allow artists to challenge and redefine popular conceptions of representation. Drawn entirely from the Museum’s permanent collection, this installation brings together rarely seen examples of modern American still life paintings, executed within a brief thirty-year period, to highlight the diversity of artistic expression and styles that can be found in one of the most recognizable and beloved genres in the history of art.

Featured: Jane Peterson, Petunias and Zinnias, ca. 1926. Oil on canvas. Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Allen Willett. 1993.68