George Wesley Bellows,
Pencil, colored pencil, and ink on Paper
6 in. x 8 1/2 in. (15.24 cm x 21.59 cm)
North America, USA
Gift of General and Mrs. Edward Clinton Young
Pencil, colored pencil, and ink on paper.
Drawing of a crowded street scene, in thick expressionistic line. In black and white with mustard brown accent. "Street Scene" is typical of Bellows best drawings in the artist's use of a large variety of materials within a single work to achieve pictorial completeness. Although there are touches of colored crayon, color is completely subordinated to achieve a linear conception. The drawing is directly related to one of the few watercolors Bellows ever made, "Under the Elevated." Both show the same horse and leader clearing the show, bypassers at the right, a boat docked in the background, and the elevated overhead. In the drawing, however, falling snow is indicated by thin, white crayon lines.
Street Scene is typical of George Bellows’ most successful drawings in the artist’s use of a variety of materials within a single work to achieve pictorial harmony. Bellows was born and raised in Columbus, Ohio. In 1904 he moved to New York City. He studied under Robert Henri, the foremost figure and leader of the Ashcan School. This group consisted of a number of American realist painters of the early 20th century who sought to depict the contemporary American scene in all its forms. In 1913 he became a full member of the National Academy and in the same year helped organize the famous Armory Exhibition, which was aimed at introducing modern European art to the American audience. Through this exhibition, artists and the public alike became acquainted with radical movements such as Fauvism and Cubism, which set the foundation for the modern American art movements that soon followed.
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