Benjamin West
American, 1738-1820
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Collected by major museums
Tate, National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., Indianapolis Museum of Art at Newfields
Selected exhibitions
2017
Americans Abroad,
Debra Force Fine Art
2015
Work and Leisure in American Art: Selected Works from the Collection,
Montclair Art Museum
2014
Royal Childhood,
Royal Collection Trust

Extremely popular among the 18th-century British aristocracy and royalty, Benjamin West’s work is primarily composed of commissioned portraits and history paintings. West is best known for his 1770 painting The Death of General Wolfe, which caused a stir when it was displayed at the Royal Academy because the figures were shown wearing contemporary clothing rather than classical garb. Later in his career, West began to focus on religious subject matter in his work and began to devote a great deal of effort to teaching American-born artists in England, such as Charles Willson Peale and Matthew Pratt.

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