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            ROBERT  HENRI     



By 1907, the year of this portrait by Gertrude Käsebier, Robert Henri was recognized as one of the most forceful personalities on the American art scene. His much-heralded classes at the New York School of Art attracted many promising young artists, including Edward Hopper, George Bellows, and Rockwell Kent. As ARTnews proclaimed in a later tribute, Henri "led his pupils away from idyllic landscapes, mid-Victorian interiors and still life in order to open their eyes-and minds-to the life about them." His progressive vision, however, was not uniformly embraced. In evaluating entries for the prestigious annual exhibition at the National Academy of Design in 1907, a conservative contingent of jurors balked at including the work of Henri's peers. In response, Henri withdrew his own paintings from the exhibition and organized a group show at New York's Macbeth Gallery. Entitled "The Eight," after the number of participants, this exhibition represented the first public collaboration among a group of artists that later became known as the Ashcan School.

Gertrude Käsebier (1852-1934)
Platinum print, 1907
Published December 1982
Delaware Art Museum, Wilmington;
gift of Helen Farr Sloan, 1978
(Printable page)

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