Frederic Church was America’s most important painter during the mid-19th century. While famous for his scenes of the Arctic, South America, and the Near East, his landscapes of Maine remained central to his career. This lecture explores the layered meanings, private and public, they embodied: first in his early mastery of the conventions of art history, then in the expressions of national history during his maturity, and finally in the poignant reflections of personal history in his later years.

A noted scholar of American art and cultural studies, John Wilmerding is the Sarofim Professor of American art, emeritus, at Princeton University. He is chairman of the board of trustees of the National Gallery and a trustee of the Guggenheim Museum, Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, and the Wyeth Foundation for American Art.

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