To me, the American Dream is being able to follow your own personal calling. To be able to do what you want to do is incredible freedom.
-American designer and artist, Maya Ying Lin
During the United States’ relatively brief history, the country has produced some of the world’s finest craftsmen and artisans. From silver makers Tiffany & Co. and Paul Revere to painters Norman Rockwell, Martha Walter, and Daniel Ridgeway Knight, the American spirit has inspired generations of artistic achievement. Perhaps the most revolutionary of all American painters is 20th-century Impressionist Guy Wiggins.
Considered by many to be the “last great American Impressionist,” Guy Wiggins was the son of renowned Barbizon School painter Carleton Wiggins. Under the guidance of his talented father, Wiggins demonstrated an aptitude for painting at a young age. He later studied at the National Academy of Design under the hugely gifted William Merritt Chase and Robert Henri.
As a young man, Wiggins was influential in developing a uniquely American form of French Impressionism, and at a mere 20 years old, he became the youngest artist to have work in the permanent collection of the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Wiggins also became one of the youngest members of the Old Lyme Art Colony, where he painted alongside his father, Frank Vincent DuMond, and Childe Hassam.
Guy Wiggins enjoyed great success during his career, earning numerous awards including membership in the National Academy of Design and the prestigious Norman Wait Harris Bronze Medal from the Art Institute of Chicago. He became best known for his iconic winter cityscapes, particularly of New York City’s urban streets.
Perhaps the finest example currently on the market, Blizzard in Manhattan, depicts a busy New York boulevard blanketed in snow. Vivid reds, greens, and yellows pop against the artist’s primarily blue and grey-toned monochrome palette while seven American flags wave proudly along the thoroughfare. It is no wonder that the work of Guy Wiggins remains popular today, held in important collections worldwide and in America’s finest cultural institutions including the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York and the Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington, D.C.