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  • At the Lascaux caves in France, paintings more than 17,000 years old depict horses, deer, bulls and other animals that once roamed the land.
  • Two paintings from the Ming Dynasty show the important role nature has played in Chinese art. Mountains in particular were revered as the manifestation of “qi”—nature’s power.
  • Katharine Lee Bates wrote America the Beautiful in 1893 after seeing the view from the 14,000-foot Pike’s Peak, CO. “All the wonder of America seemed displayed there,” she later recalled.
  • French post-impressionist painter Henri Rousseau, known for his exotic landscapes, once said: “Nothing makes me so happy as to observe nature and to paint what I see.”
  • In The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, the Mississippi River is the ultimate symbol of freedom as Huck and Jim raft down its mighty waters.
  • Often described as the “Father of Modern Art,” Paul Cezanne was moved to paint the image of Mont Sainte-Victoire in southern France more than 60 times.
  • Frank Lloyd Wright’s “Fallingwater” in Pennsylvania exemplifies the influence nature played in the architect’s designs. “I go to nature every day for inspiration in the day's work,” Wright said.
  • Claude Monet’s famous “water lilies” series was based on his garden at his home in Giverny, France.
  • Ansel Adams looked to nature as his muse. This photo of Grand Teton National Park, WY, is from a series of photos commissioned in 1941 by the Interior Department.
  • Want to be inspired by nature? Visit a Conservancy preserve, such as the Broken Kettle Grasslands in Iowa. Check out our preserve map for more art-worthy locations around the world.
Nature-Inspired Art
A collection of great works through the ages, inspired by nature.

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