Addie Whitlow, Chattanooga, Tenn. – Paintings, pastels and
drawings by turn-of-the-century artist Elliott Daingerfield are now on display at the Hunter Museum of American Art.
The work of Daingerfield, who painted throughout from 1887 to 1920, was primarily influenced by the Industrial Revolution. Daingerfield sought to reconnect observers to the spiritual aspect of life during this time period.
Nicholas Liston-Avnaim, communications coordinator for the Hunter Museum, said the artwork of Daingerfield and others during this time period is still relevant today because industrialization played a significant role in our history and still plays a role with modern technology.
“Because this was around the time of the Industrial Revolution, when everyone was getting really gung-ho about the new technology and stuff like that, he was sort of directing viewers toward nature and spiritual themes,” he said.
Daingerfield’s work primarily focuses on the spiritual realm of existence; however, he also created a lot of pieces that were strongly influenced by nature.
Liston-Avnaim said that Dangerfield was good friends with his mentor, George Inness, another artist whose work the Hunter Museum currently showcases, so Inness’s artwork played a significant role on the work of Daingerfield.
“[Inness] also did a lot of landscapes and had a kind of spiritual aspect to motivate him in his art, which is similar to Daingerfield during this time period,” Liston-Avnaim said.
While Inness’s work primarily focused on nature, Liston-Avnaim said that Daingerfield branched off from the nature aspect and into the allegorical aspect.
“Daingerfield was also really interested in the transcendentalist writers, and that played a significant role on his artwork too,” Liston-Avnaimsaid.
The exhibition of Daingerfield’s artwork, titled “Seeking the Spiritual”, hopes to highlight one of the many artist responses to the importance of the industrialization and modernization of American society.
The exhibition opened Thursday, Dec. 4 and continues until Feb. 21, 2016. The museum will continue to offer various programs and events focusing on Daingerfield’s work.
General admission for the exhibition is $15 for adults and $7.50 for children. Membership levels begin at $50 and include unlimited visits to the museum along with discounted admission for museum events.
For more information about the exhibit, visit huntermuseum.org/elliottdaingerfield/