The Art of Patronage: American Paintings from the Daywood Collection

“The Daytons were likely the most significant collectors of fine art in the history of West Virginia.”

– John Cuthbert, Director and Curator, West Virginia & Regional History Center

Drawn from the collection of the Huntington Museum of Art, The Art of Patronage: American Paintings from the Daywood Collection features 41 elegant American paintings, originally from the private collection of Arthur Dayton and Ruth Woods Dayton. The Daytons (whose family surnames combine to form “Daywood”), were prominent art patrons in early 20th century West Virginia who acquired over 200 works, 80 of which were oil paintings. Active at a time when art patronage played a major foundational role in the growth of many museum collections, the Daytons sought to preserve and share artworks that they felt captured the essence of American life.

This exhibition showcases work from a transitional time in American art, approximately the late 19th and early 20th centuries, when artists abandoned the rigors of academic styles and subjects. They turned instead to intimate scenes of the cultivated countryside and figure studies of friends and neighbors that reflected the more modern influences of the Barbizon School, Impressionism, and Post-Impressionism. Robert Henri, George Inness, George Luks, Homer Dodge Martin, Gari Melchers, John Sloan, John Twachtman, and J. Alden Weir are among the notable artists featured in the exhibition, which serves as a luminous window into one couple’s experience in the world of art patronage.

Number of Works:
41 paintings
Organized by:
The Huntington Museum of Art, Huntington, WV
Christopher Hatten, Senior Curator
Approximate size:
225-250 linear feet
High security
Participation Fee:
Please inquire
IA&A makes all arrangements; exhibitors pay outgoing shipping within the contiguous U.S.
Booking Period:
12 weeks
September 2019-October 2022
September 2019-June 2021 and November 2021-October 2022
Polk Museum of Art, Lakeland, FL
July 31, 2021 – October 23, 2021