Artists have had a long-standing impact on the formation, expansion and direction of our national parks. Painting the landscapes of the American West, visual artists like Thomas Moran, George Catlin and Albert Bierstadt focused attention on natural wonders in the western landscape, then unfamiliar to the eastern populace.
These visual records of early artists helped to stimulate the establishment of many of our national parks.
Today, artists continue to document national park landscapes with contemporary approaches and techniques. Writers, sculptors, musicians, composers, and other performing artists also draw upon the multifaceted quality of parks for inspiration.
These artists translate the national preserve's purpose, as a place of pleasure and conservation, into images, which bring others enjoyment and a deeper understanding of the parks many Americans may never visit.
Last updated: May 1, 2020