Fenimore Art Museum
During the second quarter of the nineteenth century, American artists developed a strong interest in genre painting, or scenes and events from everyday life. Prior to this time, the vast majority of paintings were portraits of the mercantile, social, and political leaders of the country. Genre painting allowed American artists to express their cultural ideals as distinct from those of Europe, as they consistently emphasized the values of personal and economic liberty and individual entrepreneurship.
A century ago, Frederic Remington was the busiest artist in America. He researched his subjects in books, in the field, and through personal correspondence. He taught himself color theory to overcome the limitations of working in black and white and investigated the science of casting to perfect his sculptures.