In 2013, the United States Postal Service released a series of modern art stamps that includes an image of a painting by Arthur Dove, a member of the Hobart Class of 1903 and renowned American painter of the early 20th century.
Dove, a Geneva native, attended Hobart College at the turn of the 20th century. In 1980 he was honored by William B. Carr with the Arthur Dove ’03 Art Award, which was established in his name and is used to purchase a work of art created by an HWS student chosen from the annual Student Art and Architecture Exhibition held in The Davis Gallery in Houghton House.
“Arthur Dove was one of the first American abstract painters,” says Kathryn Vaughn, visual arts curator at HWS. “He and the other artists under the wing of Alfred Stieglitz brought ‘modern art’ to the attention of Americans.”
The USPS stamps are known as the Modern Art in America Forever Stamps, commemorating 12 artists for their work between 1912 and 1931. It is being done in recognition of the 100 years since the “groundbreaking” Armory Show that opened in New York City in 1913. Some of the artists included in the series are Stuart Davis, Georgia O’Keeffe, Aaron Douglas and Charles Demuth.
The painting of Dove’s that they used is called “Fog Horns,” an oil-on-canvas painting completed in 1929 that “suggests the peal of foghorns as sea.”
Dove’s father owned the Dove Block, which is a building in downtown Geneva at the corner of Castle and Exchange streets. The owners of Stomping Grounds, James and Beth Haswell, are currently taking it over as part of their store.
“Dove’s legacy lives on in the abstract and abstracted work being done by contemporary artists, especially in the revival of painting in the late 20th and early 21st century,” Vaughn says.