A frank, absolute, sincere expression of any tendency is always interesting. —Henry James on Winslow Homer, 1875

JUST how interesting Homer's earnest art was to remain, no Victorian could have guessed. In his day he seemed strong but crude. Now. in an age of infinitely cruder painting, it is the strength of Homer's honesty that tells. This week, 48 years after Homer's death. Washington's National Gallery is honoring his memory with a big retrospective show. The 241 pictures proved to the hilt that Homer's passion was for realizing life as he saw it. and as forthrightly as he possibly could. Said Museum...

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