Inventing an American Style: Prints from the Library’s Collection, 1880s-1920s
With views of 19th century Cincinnati, fine examples of the American Etching Revival movement, Currier & Ives lithographs, and full-color commercial prints, the images on display show America’s desire, at the turn of the last century, to invent visual forms that express a national cultural identity. During the Gilded Age (1865-1905), the United States underwent deep social, economic, and cultural changes, and as a result grew from a rural society into a world-leading urban and industrial power. These transformations are reflected in the diversity of new artistic trends and aspirations. Colorful commercial prints proliferated, produced for a fast growing urban, entertainment-seeking class. For half a century, the popular Currier & Ives prints “held a mirror up to America” depicting genre scenes of everyday life. At the same time, American landscape painters and etchers developed a new maturity: abandoning traditional topographic and panoramic views, a more personal and suggestive vision of the American landscape emerged. Behind all these images, the recurrent theme is a glorification of American life, character, and nature. The exhibit will be on view in the Cincinnati Room until August 20.
Wish You Were Here: Vacation Destination
“Wish You Were Here: Vacation Destination” explores world travel with posters and postcards from the Library’s collection. This exhibit will be on view in the display cases on the second and third floor of the Main Library from May 6th - June 10th. With the advent of the jet engine leisure travel became more affordable. The middle class began to seek out other cultures and exotic destinations. Travel agencies became a booming industry.
A Place of Beauty, Health and Play: A History of Cincinnati Parks
Through June 30, the Main Library is displaying selections from its historic postcard collection in A Place of Beauty, Health and Play: A History of Cincinnati Parks. This display features more than 60 images of 17 parks, including Ault, Eden, Lincoln, Mount Echo and Washington parks. Images from the display can be viewed online.
For additional information about any of the exhibits listed please call our Programs & Exhibits Coordinator at 513-369-6944.