May 25–December 1, 2024

Hyman Bloom: Landscapes of the Mind

In 1955 Hyman Bloom (1913–2009) began visiting the small town of Lubec, Maine—at that time a good ten-hour drive from his home in Boston. Lubec’s unspoiled forests inspired him to draw with ambition, focus, and scale that few of his contemporaries came close to matching. The resulting works reveal a desire to capture the primal character of the wilderness—its life cycle of birth, death, and transformation—as well as a pervading mysticism and belief in nature’s correspondence to the psyche.

“Hyman Bloom: Landscapes of the Mind” invites visitors into the artist’s imagination to experience nature as he did. Focused on Bloom’s drawings, the works on view brilliantly communicate volume, shading, light, and line, showing Bloom to be a technically gifted draftsman who holds his own with any other in history. These are not one-to-one copies of what Bloom saw; they pull from memory and photographs he took in the woods, but are essentially colored by a one-of-a-kind creative vision. At once imaginary and real, Bloom’s drawings bring art to life through a distinct and innate ability to conjure the spirit.

Many works in the exhibition are part of a gift from Stella Bloom, the artist’s widow. This transformational gift helps the MFA in its aspiration to become the collection of record for this important Boston artist.

  • Clementine Brown Gallery (Gallery 170)