July's Painting of the Month:
Martin Johnson Heade, 1819-1904
The Magnolia Blossom, 1888
Oil on canvas, 38.4 x 61.3 cm (15 1/8 x 24 1/8 in.)
On permanent display in the Timken's American Gallery, Martin Johnson Heade's The Magnolia Blossom is a magnificent example of the artist's work at its best. Still attached to a cut twig, the voluptuous white blossom rests close to the edge of a table upon a red velvet cloth. The flower and surrounding radiating green leaves are perfect, without natural flaws, giving it a strong presence.' Heade began his career as a portraitist but became known for his landscapes and still lives of Brazilian hummingbirds and exotic tropical flowers. His landscapes of the coastal salt marshes of Massachusetts, New Jersey, and Rhode Island became iconic images in American art closest to those of European Romantics like Casper David Friedrich. One of these landscapes, Clouding Over: On the Marshes, can now be seen in the Timken's exhibition Collections in Context: American Art from a Pacific Northwest Collection, 1860-1950 (July 1- September 4, 2016). View The Magnolia Blossom in the Colleciton.