Current Exhibitions

February 9, 2018—May 6, 2018

Pen to Paper: Artists’ Handwritten Letters from the Smithsonian’s Archives of American Art

Pen to Paper, a selection from the Smithsonian’s Archives of American Art, reveals the beauty and intimacy of the craft of letter writing. Pen to Paper explores the handwriting of celebrated artists such as Berenice Abbott, Alexander Calder, Mary Cassatt, Frederic Edwin Church, Thomas Eakins, Howard Finster, Harriet Hosmer, Jacob Lawrence, Robert Motherwell, Claes Oldenburg, Georgia O’Keeffe, Jackson Pollock, John Singer Sargent, James McNeil Whistler, and many others.

To complement the Smithsonian’s collection, a selection of handwritten letters from the Florence Griswold Museum Archives will augment the display.

Find Out More


An American Place: The Art Colony at Old Lyme

During the first two decades of the 20th century, the village of Old Lyme, Connecticut was the setting for one of the largest and most significant art colonies in America.

Find Out More

Upcoming Exhibitions

May 11 – September 16, 2018

Art and the New England Farm  

Drawing on the agricultural heritage of Florence Griswold’s family estate and of the Lyme region and beyond, this exhibition examines the history and character of New England’s farms in works by artists from the 19th to the 21st century. Paintings, drawings, and photographs from public and private collections trace the challenges of farming in New England, with its rocky soil, and the pastoral landscapes crafted through intense labor. Landscapes by George Henry Durrie will receive special attention as influential representations that translated the New England farmstead into an American icon in the mid-nineteenth century. Works by Ivan Olinsky, Thomas Nason, Martin Lewis, and Walker Evans will map the transformation and decline of the New England farm into the 20th century with the pressures of urbanization and suburbanization. The more recent revival of farming, with the enthusiasm for organic produce and farm-to-table cooking, will close the exhibition, with the inclusion of works by contemporary artists and photographers, including artist Judy Friday’s project on a year in the life of Lyme’s Tiffany Farm.

Edward Volkert, Ox with Haywagon. Oil on wood, 16 x 20 inches. Florence Griswold Museum, Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Gerald Freedman, 1984.26

Find out more

September 29, 2018–January 27, 2019 

Paper Trail: American Prints, Drawings, and Watercolors

Works on paper have been cherished in Old Lyme since the Art Colony’s heyday, when artists gathered around Florence Griswold’s parlor table to play the “Wiggle Game”—an amusement where one artist was challenged to finish a drawing of disparate lines begun by another. The Museum’s collection has grown in scope to include Connecticut artists working from colonial times to the present. Sections of this exhibition will make connections between artists across time who shared a love of putting ink, graphite, watercolor, and pastel on paper. In addition to showcasing artists at the Old Lyme Colony, collection highlights include significant gifts of works on paper by Fidelia Bridges, Thomas Nason, and Sol LeWitt.


Gabor Peterdi, Red Red Eclipse, 1967. Color etching (soft ground) and aquatint on paper, 17 5/8 x 23 5/8 inches. Florence Griswold Museum, Gift of Charles T. Clark, 2016.8

Find out more

Online Exhibitions

Dear Dear Husband

View Exhibition

With a Needle & Brush

View Exhibition

The Exacting Eye of Walker Evans

View Exhibition