L. D. M. Sweat Memorial Galleries

The L. D. M. Sweat Memorial Galleries, built in 1911, highlight the Museum's treasures of 19th-century American art—sculpture, furniture, decorative arts, and paintings, including our prized collection of works by Winslow Homer. The McLellan House is presented as a work of art in its own right, its magnificent architecture carefully preserved and its decor restored to the vibrance and elegance of the Federal era. The works of art in the Sweat Galleries reflect the changing customs, tastes, and concerns of Americans who created, purchased, and commissioned them. In these galleries, you will travel back through the history of art in the United States. The journey begins with works created on the eve of the 20th century that look back to the United States' rich history and forward to the challenges of a new era. These give way to the lush portraits, still lifes, and exotic scenes that represent the height of academic painting in America and the tastes of a cultivated and wealthy leisure class. Landscapes by the United States' most acclaimed painters, including Winslow Homer, shed light upon Maine's role as favored subject and haven for 19th-century artists. Our regional artistic tradition is further explored in a gallery that traces the development of American arts through the first half of the 19th century, including portraits and landscapes as well as lavish decorative objects—such as locally-manufactured furniture and silver—of the type used by the residents of the McLellan House. The Lorenzo de Medici Sweat Memorial Galleries, which opened in 1911, honor the husband of the Museum's great benefactor, Margaret Jane Mussey Sweat (1823—1908). Designed by prominent Maine architect John Calvin Stevens to harmonize with the architecture of the McLellan House, the Sweat Galleries are now the setting for the Museum's collections of 19th-century American art.
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