Public Programs: America's Historical and Cultural Organizations: Planning Grants

Period of Performance

10/1/2011 - 9/30/2012

Funding Totals (outright + matching)

$48,000.00 (approved)
$48,000.00 (awarded)

Hudson River School Art Trail

FAIN: GE-50491-11

Thomas Cole Historic House (Catskill, NY 12414-1027)
Elizabeth Bond Jacks (Project Director: January 2011 to February 2013)

Planning for online and handheld interpretive formats that will allow visitors to make on-site comparisons between paintings by Thomas Cole and the actual landscapes from which he worked.

The project is to develop a new interpretive framework for exploring a formative period in America’s cultural history through the artist Thomas Cole (1801-1848) and the art movement that he launched, now known as the Hudson River School. The framework consists of a central online database of images, texts and media files that feed into several user-friendly tools including a website and a geolocation-sensitive application for smart phones and other hand-held devices. This technology enables the public to take interpretive material out into the landscapes where the 19th-century artists found their inspiration. The project is a collaboration between several Hudson River School-related historic sites and institutions, and it aims to deepen public understanding of this influential chapter in American history in a way that can not be accomplished in a museum or at a desk – but can only be felt and absorbed while standing in the midst of a landscape.