Virtually explore this museum with Smarthistory as your guide
videos + essays
Diego Rivera’s Detroit Industry Murals is a monumental 27-panel mural at the Detroit Institute of Arts that portrays the geological, technological, and human history of Detroit. Rivera was a great admirer of American innovation and both celebrates and questions its impact on society. He depicts the enormity and complexity of an automotive factory and presents […]
A critic accused Whistler of “flinging paint at the public” when he saw this painting, so Whistler sued him.
The natural world and political metaphor, Church's Cotopaxi
Artemisia Gentileschi's image of Judith and her maidservant powerfully showcases the artist's ability to create a dramatic moment
As we can see in a closer examination of The Jewish Cemetery, Ruisdael's works were closely based on, but not entirely beholden to, the world he saw around him.
She was a pioneer of the “soak-stain method” of diluting acrylic paint and pouring it into unprimed canvas.
Rivera’s controversial murals were made at the height of Depression-era instability in auto-manufacturing Detroit.
Fuseli explores the drama of the unconscious in this work, whose morbid eroticism endeared it to Edgar Allan Poe.