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DECEMBER 2017
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WEB ORDERS and
INQUIRIES call
DAILY 1 - 9 ET
1-800-627-8223
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Williamsburg
SHOWROOM HOURS
December

Friday 11 - 4
Saturday 11 - 3
And other weekdays
by appointment


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(757) 565-7424
1-800-627-8223

 Art of Dr. Seuss
 Disney Fine Art Prints
 Greenwich Workshop Artists
 Harry Potter Book Prints
 Charles Schulz (Peanuts)
 Tom Everhart (Snoopy)
 Chuck Jones (Grinch Prints)
 Vintage Posters (War+Film)
 Mystic Seaport Artwork
 Sat. Evening Post Covers
 Bethany Lowe Plushes
 Richard Masloski Bronzes
 Mark Hopkins Bronzes
 Mill Pond Press Prints
 
  Williamsburg, Virginia
Home of the Art-cade Gallery of Fine Art


Listed in Leisure+Travel Magazine’s 15 best American small towns to visit in 2017,
for its historical significance and its 21st century charms including the annual Arts Month. Visit the “Historic Triangle”
– stop in to see our gallery too!

When you come to town, may we suggest a great planning source:

Monthly Visitors’ Guide


First recorded American art exhibit
was held here in Williamsburg
One exhibition room at The Art-cade Gallery is named for Matthew Pratt, who as an early colonial artist recorded a first for the “arts” here in the New World. America’s first recorded art exhibition was organized by itinerant colonial artist Matthew Pratt (1734-1805) here in Williamsburg, Virginia. In the March 4, 1773 issue of the “Virginia Gazette” newspaper, Philadelphia native Pratt advertised an exhibition and sale of artwork including copied works of Old Masters, to be displayed at “Mrs. Vobe’s” (King’s Arms Tavern). See the copy of his advertisement below.
For the next two weeks Mr. Pratt again advertised his artwork and talent in the “Gazette.” But by week two the wording of his message changed from “to be disposed of at the Prices to be fixed on each Picture” to announcing that the artwork will be disposed of “by Way of Auction, to the highest Bidder.” He also mentions in his ad that he will be leaving the city the next week.
His final “Gazette” advertisement offers his services to “any Gentlemen or Ladies [who] are desirous to employ” him and asks them to leave a message for him at the local post office. He planned to spend the summer back in New York.
About Matthew Pratt, the artist
Mr. Pratt served an art apprenticeship under his artist-uncle James Claypoole in Philadelphia in the early 1750s. He then successfully ventured out on his own becoming recognized in the colonies as a successful portrait painter. In 1764 he escorted his cousin to London for her marriage to famous British artist Benjamin West. For two and a half years Pratt remained in England as the first of West’s many American students.
After the Revolution, Mr. Pratt was more successful as a creator of unusual signs than for his portraits in the newly created country. He died in Philadelphia in 1805.
Even before Independence from Great Britain, Americans were beginning to develop a cultural heritage of their own. For his introduction of classical art to the colonial capital of Virginia in 1773, Williamsburg’s Art-cade Gallery of Traditional Art dedicates “The Matthew Pratt Exhibition Room” to original drawings of comic cartoons – another American “original.”
Matthew Pratt's first advertisement in the "Virginia Gazette," March 4, 1773


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