From the museum’s press release:
Cape Ann Museum’s special exhibition of works by artist and illustrator Harrison Cady (1877–1970)
Affectionately known to many as the bug painter, Harrison Cady (1877–1970) was a much loved member of Cape Ann’s summer art colony throughout the 20th century. A prolific illustrator, a printmaker and a painter, Cady was one of the last links to our nation’s Golden Age of Illustration, a distinction he earned through his long collaboration with writer Thornton Burgess. View from the Headlands, a special exhibition of works by artist and illustrator Harrison Cady (1877-1970) will open at the Cape Ann Museum on July 7, 2018, and remain on display through October 28, 2018.
Cady began his 70-year career as an illustrator with the Brooklyn Eagle and later worked for numerous popular American publications, including Life magazine, Ladies’ Home Journal, the Saturday Evening Post, and Good Housekeeping. His syndicated comic strip “Peter Rabbit” ran in the New York Herald Tribune for 28 years.
A frequent visitor to Rockport, Massachusetts, Cady made it his permanent summer home in 1920, purchasing a seafront property known as “The Headlands.” With his studio “the Silo” located nearby, Cady shifted his focus to painting landscapes and harbor scenes. Cady was an early member of the Rockport Art Association, founded in 1921.
View from the Headlands draws on public and private collections throughout the region with examples of Cady’s early magazine illustrations, his work with writer Thornton W. Burgess, and his later landscape paintings. The exhibition reflects the Cape Ann Museum’s commitment to preserving and presenting work that celebrates the area’s culture and history.
Harrison Cady (1877–1970). Lane’s Cove, c.1930s. Oil on board. The James Collection, promised gift to the Cape Ann Museum.
Walter Harrison Cady was born and raised in Gardner, Massachusetts, and headed to New York City at eighteen. The successful artist eventually had an eight room studio in the Sixty Seventh Studios building at 27 West 67, NYC. The Cadys purchased a summer house and studio on Atlantic Avenue in Rockport (see photos above). In addition to this exciting and rare chance to see original work by Cady at Cape Ann Museum, there is a new book celebrating Cady’s art currently in production: Madness in Crowds: The Teeming Mind of Harrison Cady. Cady had long ties with the Rockport Art Association and local artists. Cady’s work is in the collection of the Library of Congress, Metropolitan Museum of Art, and various private collections and institutions. The Archives of American Art has a gifted collection of Harrison Cady (sketchbooks, correspondence, estate papers digitized. How fantastic that work will be acquired by the Cape Ann Museum.
photos below: Harrison Cady sketchbook, ca. 1943. Harrison Cady papers, 1902-2002. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Library of Congress