Amon Carter print details

Pink Cyclamen

Fidelia Bridges (1834-1923)

Object Details

  • Date

    ca. 1875

  • Medium

    Transparent and opaque watercolor heightened with gum glaze and graphite on paper

  • Dimensions

    Image: 13 15/16 x 9 15/16 in.
    Sheet: 13 15/16 x 9 15/16 in.

  • Inscriptions


    l.l. in graphite: 65

    [removed] white printed label: A.P.F., Inc. \ Framemakers & Conservators \ 601 West 26th Street \ P. \ SHOWROOM \ A. \ 35 East 76th Street \ at the \ Carlyle Hotel \ New York City

    [removed] white label: 830064 A. Carter Museum [typewritten] \ Bridges - Pink Cyclamen [typewritten]

    [removed] white printed label: Berry-Hill Galleries, Inc. \ 743 Fifth Avenue • New York, N.Y. 10022 \ (212) 371-6777 \ [line] \ FB65 [typewritten] \ FIDELIA BRIDGES (1834-1923) [typewritten] \ Pink Cyclamens [underlined and typewritten] \ Watercolor, 14 x 10 inches [typewritten] \ Illustrated, full page (p.35) [typewritten] Fidelia Bridges [underlined and typewritten] \ New Britain Museum Catalogue [typewritten]

  • Credit Line

    Amon Carter Museum of American Art, Fort Worth, Texas

  • Accession Number


  • Copyright

    Public domain

Object Description

In Bridges’s watercolor, a red clay pot anchors a band of green leaves, topped by delicate pink flowers that sway against an olive-green backdrop. Above and around the pot, traces of pencil underdrawing are evident, indicating that Bridges began with a sketch for a larger, more sprawling plant before arriving at this elegant arrangement.

A founding member of the American Watercolor Society, Bridges specialized in floral still-life paintings, creating works that combine disciplined naturalism with a sense of design informed by Japanese aesthetics. Spare, refined compositions like Pink Cyclamen drew praise from 19th-century audiences, with one critic exclaiming that “Bridges has, one might almost say, invented a branch of art entirely her own, revealing a highly poetic perception of nature and artistic feeling and knowledge.”

—Text taken from the Carter Handbook (2023).

Additional details

Location: Off view
See more by Fidelia Bridges


Educator Resources
  • How might a work of art based on a natural object compare to a scientific drawing of the same subject?

    How do artists use scale and proportion to create a unique composition?

    How might artists be inspired both by art movements from the past and those of their own time and culture?

    Why do artists follow or break from established traditions?

    How has the role of women in the arts changed over time?

  • What objects do you see in this painting? How would you describe the objects you see?

    What decisions has the artist made about depicting this object? How did the artist paint the objects so that they look so real?

    The Pre-Raphaelite approach, with its focus on detail, was a major influence on Bridges’ art. The movement began in 1848 when a group of seven young painters and poets in England banded together against what they felt was an artificial and mannered approach to painting taught at London's Royal Academy of Arts. They advocated for the close study of the natural world and called for paintings that replicated nature in exacting detail.

    What do you notice about the size of the object in relation to the overall composition? The object dominates the painting: In some still lifes, the scale of the object is the same as the object in real life. Why?

    How would you describe the color used in this painting? Do you think that the color choice is about mood or about the realistic color of the flowers themselves?

    Does Bridges give us any clues about the setting in which this flower appears? Why would the artist give us such a nondescript background? What are the benefits of this choice? What are the limitations?

    Bridges was interested in painting nature. As her art developed, she focused more on detailed renditions of flowers and birds. Switching from oil to watercolor, she found a medium that worked well for her. She was able to produce works that were visually lyrical—so much so that she was asked to illustrate books of poetry.

    Her talents gained her recognition and membership in the National Academy of Design in 1873 and in the American Watercolor Society in 1874.

  • All Levels

    Students will choose a single object to recreate as a still life. They will consider ideas of scale, proportion, color, and composition, as Bridges did, and apply them to their own work.

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