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The valley of the Connecticut River, called the Pioneer Valley in Massachusetts, boasts five colleges and universities, as well as several outstanding fine arts museums.
 
 

 

The Pioneer Valley in central Massachusetts is known for its famous colleges and universities: Amherst, Mount Holyoke, Smith, University of Massachusetts and more, as well as the city of Springfield (map). Several of the colleges in the valley have outstanding collections of fine art, and Springfield's Museum Quad has two of Massachusetts's finest art museums.

Amherst

Mead Art Museum

Amherst College's fine arts museum features American and European paintings, Mexican ceramics, Tibetan scroll paintings, an English paneled room, ancient Assyrian carvings, Russian avant-garde art, West African sculpture, and Japanese prints. More...

Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art

If you love picture book illustration, The Carle is for you: over 13,000 works by Ludwig Bemelmans, Ashley Bryan, Leo Lionni, Trina Schart Hyman, Arnold Lobel, Petra Mathers, Jerry Pinkney, Arthur Rackham, Allen Say, Maurice Sendak, William Steig, Simms Taback, Chris Van Allsburg, Rosemary Wells, Garth Williams, Margot Zemach, and many others. More...

Northampton

Smith College Museum of Art

The Smith College collections include works from Africa, the Americas, Asia and Europe; medieval and renaissance, modern, contemporary, and art by women. There's a good collection of French Impressionists including Paul Cézanne, Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot, Gustave Courbet, Edgar Degas, Jean-Léon Gérôme, Claude Monet, Camille Pissarro, Georges Pierre Seurat, and Joseph Wright of Derby.

The North American collection includes, George Wesley Bellows, Albert Bierstadt, John singleton Copley, Thomas Eakins, Thomas Charles Farrer, Alfred Kappes, John Singer Sargent, Charles Sheeler, Dwight William Tryon, as well as Native American paintings, textiles and crafts; from Latin America, José Bedia, Ana Mendieta, Diego Rivera, Rufino Tamayo and others. More...

South Hadley

Mount Holyoke College Art Museum

With more than 17,000 artworks, the college's collection is substantial, with strengths in Egyptian, Greek, and Roman art, Medieval sculpture and early Italian Renaissance paintings, Dutch and Italian 17th-century paintings, Asian art, American paintings and sculpture, Pre-Columbian and Native American art, and an extensive collection of drawings, prints, and photographs. More...

Springfield

George Walter Vincent Smith Art Museum

By the age of 35, George W V Smith had made a fortune. For the rest of his life, he and his wife, Belle Townsley Smith, collected art, especially Chinese, Japanese and Middle Eastern art, and 19th-century American paintings. They left it all to this Springfield museum, and we are the inheritors. More...

Michele & Donald D’Amour Museum of Fine Arts

The Michele & Donald D’Amour Museum of Fine Arts was the result of a bequest by Mr & Mrs James Philip Gray for the “selection, purchase, preservation, and exhibition of the most valuable, meritorious, artistic, and high class oil paintings obtainable.”

The Art Deco museum, opened in 1934, features American art ranging from John Singleton Copley's Portrait of Nymphas Marston to Winslow Homer's Promenade on the Beach to Contemporary glass sculpture by Dale Chihuly, as well as America's only permanent museum gallery dedicated to the lithographs of Currier & Ives.

The European collection includes an intricate 15th-century Hispano-Flemish Fuentes Retable (altarpiece), and Dutch, Flemish, French and Italian paintings from the Renaissance to the 20th century. The Impressionism Gallery includes works by Degas, Gauguin, Monet, Pissarro and others.

—by Tom Brosnahan


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George Walter Vincent Smith Art Museum, Springfield MA

George Walter Vincent Smith Art Museum, Springfield MA.

 

 

 

 

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