John Marin: Modernism at Midcentury

A abstract painting in blues and browns of a shoreline, land, and sea depicted as irregular, geometric shapes.
November 4, 2011–January 8, 2012
Second floor

Reflect on the last 20 years of the art of John Marin, one of America’s foremost modernists in this special exhibition of over 50 oils and watercolors from 1933 to 1953.

Marin drew inspiration from Maine’s forested mountains, picturesque towns, misty harbors, and rolling seas beginning in 1914. However, in 1933 he began living part of each year on Cape Split, a remote and sparsely settled northern peninsula in Pleasant Bay, providing fresh inspiration for his works. His Cape Split paintings exemplify a renewed enthusiasm for the abstract properties that had always been a feature of his work. Flattening the painterly space and using floating forms and energetic brushwork, Marin transformed the fleeting patterns of the natural world into innovative compositions, forming patterns that would become some of the primary preoccupations of mid-century American art.

Installation Photos

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John Marin: Modernism at Midcentury was co-organized by the Addison Gallery of American Art, Phillips Academy, Andover, Massachusetts, and the Portland Museum of Art, Maine. This project is supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts.