In 1978, Mr. and Mrs. John D. Rockefeller 3rd gave the Fine Arts Museums more than one hundred works of American art. This selection from that gift, spanning a century, reveals the breadth of their collecting and their commitment to aesthetic quality. Many of the works reveal artists’ wonder at what they conceived of as the “New World.” Even as they excitedly shared their sense of the novelty of American culture, however, artists began to romanticize the nation’s past. Seen together, these works reveal the interconnectedness of the novel and nostalgic in American culture.

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