Open Content Program
The Birmingham Museum of art makes available digital images of works in the Museum’s collection believed to be in the public domain. Images are available free of charge for any use, commercial or non-commercial. Users do not need to contact the Museum for authorization to use these images. They are available through the Online Collection at artsbma.org/collection. See detailed instructions for specific work types below.
Identifying Open Content Images
The mission of the Birmingham Museum of Art is to spark the creativity, imagination, and liveliness of Birmingham by connecting all its citizens to the experience, meaning, and joy of art. The Museum understands that by sharing images of works online without restrictions, the BMA collection becomes more accessible to a larger audience.
For objects with images the rights status is displayed in the “credit line” section of the object information. The rights status or rights holder will be indicated. If the work is in the public domain and/or the image may be downloaded, the download icon will appear in the bottom right corner of the image area. To search the collection click here.
Works With Restrictions
For copyright-protected images that have been approved by copyright holders, a presentation-sized image is available, but can not be downloaded. A copyright statement clearly listing the name of the copyright holder is visible in the credit line area when the image is displayed. Thumbnail-sized images of copyrighted works are displayed under fair use.
When the owner of a work is impossible to determine or contact, the work is deemed an orphan work. The Museum will make thumbnails of orphan works available. If you are the representative or rights holder of an orphan work, please contact Rights and Reproductions.
Please use the following source credit when reproducing an Open Content image: Courtesy Birmingham Museum of Art, followed by the credit line provided in the object description.
Although there are no restrictions or conditions of the use of an Open Content image, the BMA would appreciate a gratis copy of any scholarly publication(s) in which the images are reproduced in order to maintain collection bibliography. Copies may be sent to the attention of:
Open Content Program
Digital Media Department
The Birmingham Museum of Art
2000 Rev. Abraham Woods Jr. Blvd
Birmingham, AL 35203
- If an image is not available under Open Content it may be because the work is still under copyright, the work is not owned by the museum, or the work has not yet been photographed to BMA standards.
- Request Images: If an image of a work is not available online or is under copyright, you may submit a request through our online request form. You may also request files in additional sizes or formats. A fee will be charged for this service.
- Our determination of public domain is made in good faith.
- Electronic records are based on historical information and may not be the Museum’s complete or current knowledge about an object. Research is ongoing.
- The ‘On View’ status may be delayed on the website by 24 hours. Please check with our Rights and Registration Office to confirm that a work of art will be on view before traveling to the Museum.
- Titles Overlooking the River From the Cliffs (Proper)
- Artist John Frederick Kensett, American, 1816 - 1872
- Medium oil on paper laid down on canvas
- Dimensions 9 1/4 x 12 5/8 in. (23.5 x 32.1 cm) frame: 19 13/16 × 23 1/4 × 3 1/4 in. (50.3 × 59.1 × 8.3 cm)
- Credit Line Gift of Dr. and Mrs. Harold E. Simon, 1978.42
- Work Type painting
- Classification Paintings
- On View
- Signature None
- Marks None
- Inscription Verso, top stretcher bar, center left, typed label with red boarder: JOHN FREDERICK KENSETT / Born in Chesire, Conn., Mar 22[last character blurred], 1818 / Died in New York Dec 16, 1872 / Landscape Painter Verso, top stretcher bar, on canvas and tacking tape, top center right, red marker: K’No. 25 Exh. Of 19th / AMER. LDSE PTGS. / 5/1-5/28/69 Verso, top stretcher bar, green typed label: 43 [ripped] Verso, top stretcher bar, right, black marker: A14403 Verso, top stretcher bar, top right, incised: #23425 [damage to stretcher bar; unable to discern if there are any numbers after 5] / #23174 / 10 x 13 4 [illegible] Verso, left stretcher bar, over canvas, top left, black pen: B.M.A. 78.42 Verso, bottom stretcher bar, bottom left, typed label: Artist KENSETT, JOHN F. Dates 1816-1872 / Title OVER-LOOKING THE RIVER FROM / THE CLIFFS / Size 9 ¾ x 13 ½ Medium Oil/canvas / Stock Number A14403 Neg. No. 8311 68[circled] / FINE PRINTS AND AMERICAN PAINTINGS / KENNEDY GALLERIES, INC. - 20 EAST 56th STREET / FOUNDED 1874 BY H. WUNDERLICH New York, N. Y. 10022 Verso, bottom stretcher bar, center, typed gallery label: FINE PRINTS AND AMERICAN PAINTINGS / Kennedy Galleries, Inc. / Founded 1874 by H. Wunderlich / 20 East 56th Street New York, N. Y. 10022 / 98248 [added in black marker Frame, recto, bottom center, black paint on metal: J. F. KENSETT Frame, verso, liner, bottom right, black marker: M.A. 78.42 (first letter obscured by screw) Frame, verso, bottom frame rail, center, typed label: Gill & Lagodich / FINE PERIOD FRAMES & RESTORATION / 108 READE STREET NEW YORK N.Y. 10013 / TEL: 212-619-0631 * FAX: 212-285-1353 / INVENTORY No. / 9134-VAR [in black ink]
- Provenance John Frederick Kensett (1816-1872). Mr. B. M. Allen, by 1935 [see note 1]. Dealer Kennedy Galleries, New York [see note 2]; David Bischoff (1930-2016); by exchange to dealer Vose Galleries, Boston, Massachusetts [see note 3]; purchased (in part by exchange) by Harold E. Simon (1897-1982) and Regina P. Simon (1899-1995), Birmingham, Alabama, July 8, 1971 [see note 4]; gift to the Birmingham Museum of Art, Alabama, 1978
1. According to report given to Harold E. Simon by S. Morton Vose, II of Vose Galleries, June 10, 1971, B. M. Allen loaned 1978.42 to an exhibition at the Connecticut Tercentenary Celebration, Cheshire, Connecticut, August 15, 1935 - August 18, 1935. The label for the exhibition remains on the back of the painting. A Kennedy Galleries label on the back of 1978.42 for Kennedy Galleries list the stock numbers.
2. According to the report from Vose Galleries referenced in note 1, 1978.42 was with Kennedy Galleries before it was owned by David Bischoff. A Kennedy Galleries label on the left of the bottom stretcher of 1978.42 lists the stock no. A14403. A second Kennedy Galleries label on the right of the bottom stretcher is annotated with “98248” in in black marker. An annotation on the photo of 1978.42 at the Frick Photo Archives in New York indicates “At one time prior to 2005, with Kennedy Galleries.” The photo has the stock no. A14403.
3. According to same report referenced in note 1, Vose Galleries received 1978.42 from David Bischoff “in partial exchange for a much more expensive picture.”
4. The receipt for 1978.42 from Vose Galleries to Harold E. Simon, dated July 8, 1971, indicates that Simon traded “Get Lost” by William Holbrook Beard as partial payment for 1978.42.