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TAHOE: A Visual History

Albert Bierstadt, "Emerald Bay, Lake Tahoe," circa 1871, Oil on paper laid down on canvas, 9⅜ x 14 inches, Private Collection | Photo courtesy of Nevada Museum of Art

Albert Bierstadt, "Emerald Bay, Lake Tahoe," circa 1871, Oil on paper laid down on canvas,
9⅜ x 14 inches, Private Collection | Photo courtesy of Nevada Museum of Art

Most of us who love Lake Tahoe first experienced the beauty of the landscape through the eyes of an artist.

No doubt we saw a painting in gallery - or a photo in a ski magazine - and were inspired to make the first visit. That first visit turned into a second, and before we knew it, we were head over heels in love.

Whether your love of “The Lake” motivated you to move to the area, bring your kids to the family cabin each summer, or to drive up as often as your schedule allows, it is a pleasure to recall the beauty that initially inspired you. Immerse yourself in panoramic landscapes, sail on turquoise waters, and soar to breathtaking mountain views. Experience Lake Tahoe like never before –through the eyes of the artists.

Lake Tahoe artwork | Thomas Hill, "Fishing on a Stream near Mount Tallac," circa 1873, Oil on paper mounted on canvas, 15 x 21 ½ inches, Private Collection| Photo courtesy of Nevada Museum of Art

Thomas Hill, "Fishing on a Stream near Mount Tallac," circa 1873, Oil on paper mounted on canvas, 15 x 21 ½ inches, Private Collection | Photo courtesy of Nevada Museum of Art

Lake Tahoe has inspired countless painters, photographers, architects, weavers, and sculptors over the last two centuries, and the Nevada Museum of Art has gathered the works of 175 artists into the first major art exhibition dedicated to Lake Tahoe, Donner Pass, and the surrounding Sierra Nevada region.

Lake Tahoe artwork | Michael Light, "Highway 89, Cascade and Emerald Lakes and Mount Tallac Beyond, Looking Southwest, South Lake Tahoe, CA," 2014, Pigment print on Hahnemuhle, 40 x 50 inches, Collection of the Nevada Museum of Art, The Altered Landscape, Carol Franc Buck Collection, © Michael Light | Photo courtesy of Nevada Museum of Art

Michael Light, "Highway 89, Cascade and Emerald Lakes and Mount Tallac Beyond, Looking Southwest, South Lake Tahoe, CA," 2014, Pigment print on Hahnemuhle, 40 x 50 inches,
Collection of the Nevada Museum of Art, The Altered Landscape, Carol Franc Buck Collection,
© Michael Light | Photo courtesy of Nevada Museum of Art

TAHOE: A Visual History spans over two centuries of cultural and creative production related to the Lake Tahoe. This historic show features more than 400 artworks, including native basketry of Lake Tahoe, historical mapping and early sketches, historical paintings, architecture, 150 years of Lake Tahoe photography, and newly commissioned pieces from contemporary artists.

Lake Tahoe artwork | Photographer unknown, "Louisa Keyser marketing photograph with LK 44 and LK 59," commissioned by A. Cohn, circa 1916, Gelatin silver print, 8. x 6. inches, Courtesy of Nevada State Museum, Carson City | Photo courtesy of Nevada Museum of Art

Photographer unknown, "Louisa Keyser marketing photograph with LK 44 and LK 59," commissioned by A. Cohn, circa 1916, Gelatin silver print, 8. x 6. inches, Courtesy of Nevada State Museum, Carson City | Photo courtesy of Nevada Museum of Art

Lake Tahoe artwork | "California Nevada Survey Map" (detail), 1863, Ink on parchment, 48 x 21 ¼ inches, Collection of Nevada State Library and Archives, Carson City | Photo courtesy of Nevada Museum of Art

"California Nevada Survey Map" (detail), 1863, Ink on parchment, 48 x 21 ¼ inches, Collection of Nevada State Library and Archives, Carson City | Photo courtesy of Nevada Museum of Art

The exhibition runs August 22, 2015 - January 10, 2016 at the Nevada Museum of Art. If you’re visiting Lake Tahoe, spend an afternoon and travel for this powerful and inspiring exhibit of Lake Tahoe artwork and historical artifacts. See Lake Tahoe come alive, artfully.

Getting there: The Nevada Museum of Art is located at 160 West Liberty Street in downtown Reno, approximately 90 minutes from South Lake Tahoe.

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Georgette Hartley

Georgette loves adventuring outdoors and can usually be found exploring the trails, lakes, and peaks of the Sierra Nevada with her family.

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