A long-overdue look at the life and work of beloved American painter Albert Pinkham Ryder (1847–1917) has arrived in the form of a new book called “A Wild Note of Longing: Albert Pinkham Ryder and a Century of American Art” by Christina Connett Brophy, Elizabeth Broun and William C. Agee. The publication complements an exhibition planned for June 2021 of the same name at the New Bedford Whaling Museum and explores the powerful and enduring directions Albert Pinkham Ryder forged for generations of American modernists.
Few American artists have captured painters’ imaginations with the force of Albert Pinkham Ryder. The brooding spirituality of his works, coupled with formal innovation decades ahead of its time, made Mr. Ryder a favorite of Jackson Pollock, Marsden Hartley, Arthur Dove and others. And yet, the artist’s biography and practices remain elusive. “A Wild Note of Longing,” a book whose title comes from a poem written by Mr. Ryder, takes up the challenge, bringing a new generation of scholarship to the most comprehensive collection of Mr. Ryder’s masterworks assembled to date.
Mr. Ryder is considered a seminal artist for both the late-19th-century Gilded Age and for the emerging modernism of the early 20th century. The new book presents multiple voices from leaders in the field on the continuing and ever-evolving relevance of Mr. Ryder in modern art. In addition to a general overview of the artist’s career, essays also cover Mr. Ryder within the context of his hometown of New Bedford and his influence and context within modernism.
The New Bedford Whaling Museum plans a landmark exhibition for 2021 with “A Wild Note of Longing: Albert Pinkham Ryder and a Century of American Art,” bringing together major masterworks across the career of Albert Pinkham Ryder. It will be the first exhibition of Mr. Ryder’s work since Elizabeth Broun’s 1990 retrospective at the Smithsonian American Art Museum.
The book is now available for purchase online at www.store.whalingmuseum.org.