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Edward Hicks – Virtual Tour

Edward Hicks - Virtual Tour

Edward Hicks – Virtual Tour

Edward Hicks (1780 – 1849) was an American folk painter and a religious minister of the Society of Friends, also known as the Quakers. He became a Quaker icon because of his paintings.

About 1820, Edward Hicks began to make paintings, using his previous work experience as a painter of coaches, houses, and signs to produce devotional images.

Unable to keep up his work as a preacher and painter at the same time, Hicks transitioned into a life of painting, and he used his canvases to convey his beliefs.

Virtual Tour of Edward Hicks

Highlights Tour of Edward Hicks

The Peaceable Kingdom

Edward Hicks - Virtual Tour

“The Peaceable Kingdom” by Edward Hicks at the Brooklyn Museum is one of over 60 versions of this scene painted by Hicks. Although not a religious image, it shows Hicks’ Quaker ideals.

This painting is his interpretations of Isaiah’s biblical prophecy of a peaceable kingdom, in which benign animals and trusting infants coexist in an Eden-type setting.

The idea of the animals and children is taken from a passage in Isaiah, from the Bible. Hicks used his paintings as a way to define his central interest and belief.

In the background, William Penn executes his treaty with the Native Americans, representing the earthly realization of a peaceable kingdom.

This painting shows Hicks’ concept of working and living together in peace with depictions of Native Americans meeting peacefully with the settlers of Pennsylvania, with William Penn prominent among them.

Noah’s Ark

Edward Hicks - Virtual Tour

“Noah’s Ark” by Edward Hicks depicts the vessel in the Genesis flood narrative through which God spares Noah, his family, and the animals from a world-engulfing flood. Noah and his family built the ark according to the instructions from God.

The ark had a door on the side. The roof was made of Gopher wood, which was smeared with a form of pitch resin. This painting shows a curving line of animals lining up and entering Noah’s ark.

The line includes prancing horses and a lion, which looks out at the viewer, while pairs of zebras, elegant, giraffes, camels, tigers, and hippopotamuses make their way to the side door of the ark.

Above the ark, birds are fly down from the dark, rain-filled clouds overhead into the window above the door.

Edward Hicks

  • Artist:           Edward Hicks
  • Born:            1780, Attleboro, Pennsylvania
  • Died:            1849 (aged 69), Newtown, Pennsylvania
  • Nationality:  American
  • Notable Works:

“Noah’s Ark” by Edward Hicks

Tour of American Artists You Should Know

Edward Hicks: The Peaceable Kingdom


“If I could say it in words there would be no reason to paint.” 
– Edward Hopper


Photo Credit: Thomas Hicks, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons ;Philadelphia Museum of Art [Public domain]

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