Cheshire Library has a collection of museum & state park passes that are available on a first come, first served basis for Cheshire residents to check out. CPL Staff member Lisa continues our series about the museum passes we offer, along with related reading material. This month we will feature two of the Art Museums in C0nnecticut, The New Britain Museum of Art and The Wadsworth Atheneum.
This pass is good for free general admission for four people.
The New Britain Museum of American Art’s founding in 1903 entitles the institution to be designated the first museum of strictly American art in the country. With particular strengths in colonial portraiture, the Hudson River School, American Impressionism, and the Ash Can School, not to mention the important mural series The Arts of Life in America by Thomas Hart Benton, the museum relies heavily on its permanent collection for exhibitions and programming, yet also displays a significant number of borrowed shows and work by emerging artists. Located at 56 Lexington Street in New Britain, CT, the museum is open 7 day a week.
This pass is good for free general admission for two adults and two children.
The Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art, the oldest public art museum in the United States, was founded in 1842 by Daniel Wadsworth, one of the first important American patrons of the arts. Its collections of nearly 50,000 works of art span 5,000 years. The museum was the first in America to begin collecting contemporary American art – resulting in their world renowned Hudson River School collection. Some other featured collections include the Morgan collection of Greek and Roman antiquities and European decorative arts; world-renowned baroque and surrealist paintings, the Wallace Nutting collection of American colonial furniture and decorative arts; the Samuel Colt firearms collection, and much more. Located at 600 Main Street, Hartford, CT, see their website for hours and directions.
If you are interested in visiting the Wadsworth Atheneum and the New Britain Museum of American Art, you might also be interested in:
Art Museums Plus : Cultural Excursions in New England by Traute M. Marshall. Traute M. Marshall has written this smart and engagingly personal guidebook for curious travelers, bringing to light the wealth of small and large art museums in the six New England states, ranging from world-class encyclopedic collections to more modest and specialized venues. While providing the information found in a traditional guidebook—addresses, websites, opening times, directions, and so forth—Marshall also offers readers informed and intimate introductions to the museums and their histories, holdings, traditions, and architecture. This guide also explains exhibition practices, the presentation of the permanent collection versus the attraction of temporary shows, the different educational activities offered, and the special relationship between a town or city and its art museum.
New Britain Museum of American Art : Highlights of the Collection, introduction by Laurene Buckley ; editor, Pamela T. Barr. The finest paintings and sculpture from the museum’s collection are featured in full-color reproductions in this illustrated volume. Included are many outstanding paintings by the foremost representatives of American Impressionism such as Mary Cassatt and Childe Hassam, and the famous mural series Arts of Life in America by Thomas Hart Benton. Color reproductions of the artworks are accompanied by biographical sketches on the artists and comprehensive essays on each of the works.