Blending Art and Nature at Crystal Bridges

I recently got a chance to visit the world-class Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville, AR. It was not my first visit to Crystal Bridges, but I find that you can visit the museum several times and never run out of new things to see.

I was able to catch two of their newest exhibitions that are on view this summer, Nature’s Nation: American Art and Environment and Color Field. Both of these exhibitions blend art and nature, and I was thrilled to be able to experience them.

Viewing “George Washington at the Battle of Princeton” by Charles Willson Peale

Nature’s Nation: American Art and Environment explores the connection between art and nature. The exhibition examines American art and its impact on shaping environmental understanding and stewardship, tracing 300 years of evolving ideas about the relationship between humans and the natural world. Nature’s Nation features 100 artworks by renowned artists such as Thomas Moran, Frank Lloyd Wright, Dorthea Large and more.

I’ve always been inspired by classic American art, and I found it fascinating to explore all the different ways nature influences art through this impressive collection of American works.

Color Field is a new outdoor exhibition featuring large, colorful sculpturesĀ against the lush backdrop of the Ozark forest. The exhibition invites viewers to engage all the senses for an immersive experience that explores the impact color has on our lives. Featured works include Spencer Finch’s Back to Kansas, a billboard-sized grid derived from the artist’s repeated viewings of The Wizard of Oz, as well as Sam Fall’s interactive sculptures that welcome viewers to explore color through sight and sound. Color Field is accompanied by soundscapes created by Arkansas-based composer Amos Cochran, featuring synthetic tones and abstract sounds that add to the dream-like, whimsical experience of the exhibition.

Visiting with three young fans in front of “Back to Kansas” by Spencer Finch

This exhibition is perfect for all ages, and will capture the imagination of adults and children alike. Wandering through the Ozark forest and happening upon these large-scale, colorful works of art in a natural setting is truly an experience like no other.

You can catch both Nature’s Nation and Color Field at Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art this summer. To learn more about the museum or purchase tickets, visit crystalbridges.org.

To see more from my visit to Crystal Bridges, check out the videos below.