To the Rescue!
Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum
Winslow Homer is one of the best known painters of American scenes of outdoor life. After an apprenticeship in lithography, Homer began his career as an illustrator for Harper's, drawing scenes of the Civil War battlefront. After the war, he traveled to Europe and then spent the summer of 1873 in Gloucester, Massachusetts, where he began to work in watercolor—what would eventually became his primary medium. Homer's outdoor genre scenes painted a varied picture of Americana, from scenes of wilderness guides, to rural African American life in the post-Civil War era, to children at play. In 1881, he spent almost two years on the English coast depicting simple scenes of the local communities. As his career evolved, Homer turned more and more to the sea, and a move to a secluded spot in coastal Maine prompted the eternal struggle between man and nature to become a prominent theme in his work.
American, 1836-1910, Boston, Massachusetts, based in New York and Prouts Neck, Maine