SEE GRAND VISTAS AND SPECTACULAR SIGHTS WITHOUT LEAVING THE CITY
AT NEW-YORK HISTORICAL SOCIETY
Panoramas: The Big Picture
On View August 23 – December 8, 2019
New York, NY – July 11, 2019 – Grand waterfalls. Sweeping river views. Majestic cities. Gritty streetscapes. New-York Historical Society’s new exhibition is a feast for the eyes. Panoramas: The Big Picture, on view August 23 – December 8, 2019, explores wide-angle, bird’s-eye imagery from the 17th to the 20th century, revealing the influence that panoramas had on everything from mass entertainment to nationalism to imperial expansion. Through more than 20 panoramas, the exhibition presents the history of the all-encompassing medium in New York City, San Francisco, and beyond.
“The outstanding works from our collection displayed in Panoramas: The Big Picture bring us back to a time before IMAX or virtual reality, when immersive artworks transported viewers to grand vistas that transformed our vision of the world,” said Dr. Louise Mirrer, president and CEO of the New-York Historical Society.
Highlights of Panoramas: The Big Picture include John Trumbull’s sweeping double landscapes of Niagara Falls (1808) created as part of his plan for a large-scale, 360-degree panorama. Also on display are sections of Richard Haas’ nearly 200-foot long trompe l’oeil panorama of Manhattan (1982), commissioned by the Philip Morris Company (now known as Altria) for its basement-level corporate dining room, which recreate the view seen from the executive suites on the building’s 26th floor.
Eadweard Muybridge’s 17-foot photographic panorama of San Francisco before its devastating 1906 earthquake (1878) depicts a 360-degree vista from the top of Nob Hill, including details like hanging laundry, long staircases over the city’s famed hills, and the unfinished roads and buildings of an expanding urban center.
Also showcased are related materials like advertisements and pamphlets for panoramic exhibitions, as well as toy moving panoramas (1868) from the Milton Bradley Company that children rotated with cranks to play out scenes of battle, American history, or village life.
Panoramas: The Big Picture is curated by Wendy Ikemoto, PhD, associate curator of American Art at the New-York Historical Society. Exhibitions at New-York Historical are made possible by Dr. Agnes Hsu-Tang and Oscar Tang, the Saunders Trust for American History, the Seymour Neuman Endowed Fund, the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, and the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature. WNET is the media sponsor.
About New-York Historical Society
The New-York Historical Society, one of America’s preeminent cultural institutions, is dedicated to fostering research and presenting history and art exhibitions and public programs that reveal the dynamism of history and its influence on the world of today. Founded in 1804, New-York Historical has a mission to explore the richly layered history of New York City and State and the country, and to serve as a national forum for the discussion of issues surrounding the making and meaning of history. New-York Historical is also home to the Patricia D. Klingenstein Library, one of the oldest, most distinguished libraries in the nation—and one of only 20 in the United States qualified to be a member of the Independent Research Libraries Association—which contains more than three million books, pamphlets, maps, newspapers, manuscripts, prints, photographs, and architectural drawings.
John Trumbull (1756–1843), Niagara Falls, from under Table Rock, 1808. Oil on canvas. New-York Historical Society, gift of Alexander Eddy Hosack, 1868.5