On the east side of town, the Cincinnati Art Museum (CAM) sat regally atop a tall conical hill, perched like one of the castles along the Rhine River in Germany. CAM opened in 1886 as "The Art Palace of the West," and its prized 1907 wing was designed by famed Chicago architect Daniel Burnham. The Museum displays many paintings from Cincinnati's "Golden Age" (1830-1900), when art flourished alongside Cincinnati's industries, including world-famous Rookwood pottery and local painters James Henry Beard, Henry Farny, and the unfortunately named Godfrey Frankenstein.
American Impressionist John Twachtman may be the best-known Cincinnati painter, but he died aged only forty-nine, and Waterfall, Blue Brook in the Cincinnati museum was the only painting of his acquired by a museum during his lifetime. Twachtman's Springtime (painted while in Paris) was donated to CAM by his teacher and the hometown hero of Cincinnati artists: Frank Duveneck. The museum devoted a small gallery to Duveneck, where his paintings haphazardly filled every inch of wall space, including his masterpiece Whistling Boy (painted while he was in Munich), which he donated to the CAM.
In addition to past Cincinnati painters, the collection included work related to modern Cincinnati: paintings by living native-born Jim Dine; a Joan Miro mural that used to adorn the curved wall of the city's chicest restaurant atop a Cincinnati riverfront hotel; and Andy Warhol's huge silkscreen of 1970s Cincinnati Reds baseball star Pete Rose.