Wish You Were Here: Artists on Vacation


This exhibition documents how vacationing artists escaped from their everyday lives.

“Many artists view vacations as a time to get out of the city, to recharge in a new environment with sympathetic souls,” said Liza Kirwin, curator of manuscripts for the Archives of American Art. Getting away, however, does not mean leaving the canvas or sketchbook behind. Artists are always working, Kirwin added, and vacations are habitually regarded as an opportunity to paint, draw and study.

The exhibition includes letters, travel journals, sketchbooks, snapshots, passports and postcards from vacationing artists. Artists include Cecilia Beaux, Sanford Robinson Gifford, Jackson Pollock, John Sloan, Mary Cassatt, and many others.