Sam Watters: Gardens for a Beautiful America Photographs by Frances Benjamin Johnston
- 10:00 am on Monday, October 29, 2012
- 11:30 am on Monday, October 29, 2012
- Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University Weld Hill Research Building 1300 Centre Street, Roslindale
- Contact Name:
- Erin Yuskaitis
At the opening of the 20th century, photographer Frances Benjamin Johnston (1864-1952) was front and center in the national movement to beautify America. Gilded Age industrialism had brought a new prosperity to life in the 48 states, but at the price of once-green city streets and country back yards. In response, civic organizations and women’s clubs initiated the Garden Beautiful movement. To promote professional landscape design and horticultural diversity, they turned to Johnston, a pioneering “house and garden” photojournalist and lecturer who travelled coast to coast photographing estate parterres and row house lots as models of new design. With colored slides from Johnston’s own collection, preserved at the Library of Congress since the 1940s, historian Sam Watters will speak about the photographer’s role as documentarian, fine artist and garden club prophet of beauty.