For those unfamiliar, the Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens is a private, nonprofit institution located in San Marino, California. Founded in 1919 by businessman Henry E. Huntington, the Huntington is touted as one of the world’s great cultural, research, and educational centers.
The art collection at the Huntington recently acquired a French Barbizon School painting by artist Constant Troyon. Sunshine and Shadow was painted sometime in the 1830s by Troyon and explores his expert use of light in his oil paintings. Leading the way into the Impressionism era, this work exemplifies the ideals of the Barbizon artists with its focus on the landscape and the power of the natural world.
The Barbizon movement was an early focus of the founder Henry Huntington when he began collecting art. This addition of the Constant Troyon painting will join a group of existing Barbizon era works in the Huntington’s gallery by artists Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot, Charles-François Daubigny, Charles-Emile Jacque.
Catherine Hess, chief curator of European art, said of the acquisition of Sunshine and Shadow, “It raises the quality of the entire Barbizon School installation in the Huntington Art Gallery, allowing us to exhibit its early phase, when the influence of John Constable, who is well represented here, was at its strongest. It also helps us further understand the French and English cultural exchange of the 19th century.”
Tags: museum exhibits