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American Romanticism in Art: The Hudson River School

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Ashley Pace

on 21 March 2011

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Transcript of American Romanticism in Art: The Hudson River School

George Inness American Romanticism: The Hudson River School Emerson encouraged Americans to "ignore the courtly Muses of Europe" and create a more "American" type of art Started with the works of Thomas Cole and Asher B.Durand Had Roots in European Romanticism (Nazarenes, Friedrich, Constable, Turner)
Home in the Woods (1847) Emerson's "Thoughts on Art" "Nature is the representative of the universal mind, and the law becomes this,-- that Art must be a complement to nature, strictly subsidiary." "The first and last lesson of the useful arts is, that nature tyrannizes over our works. They must be conformed to her law, or they will be ground to powder by her omnipresent activity. Nothing droll, nothing whimsical will endure. Nature is ever interfering with Art." "As in useful art, so far as it is useful, the work must be strictly subordinated to the laws of Nature, so as to become a sort of continuation, and in no wise a contradiction of Nature; so in art that aims at beauty as an end, must the parts be subordinated to Ideal Nature, and everything individual abstracted, so that it shall be the production of the universal soul." Thomas Cole Kindred Spirits (1849) Asher B. Durand Art as a vehicle for spiritual and moral transformation - Cole and Durand revolutionized the themes and methods of American paintings. This painting became the emblem for the Husdon River School.

Cole and Durand in the painting.

Famous Symbol by Cole- "memento mori" (tree stump) reminder that life is fragile and impermanent

Only Nature and the Divine soul within a person is eternal

Nature as a "Garden of Eden" and Cole and Durand thought they held the key to entry. Other Artists from the Hudson River School Movement John Frederick Kensett Martin Johnson Heade Luminists The delicate texture of his brushwork was concentrated to produce pure and exquisite states of light and atmosphere, today referred to as luminist.

Source: John Frederick Kensett (1816–1872) | Thematic Essay | Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History | The Metropolitan Museum of Art Martin Johnson Heade (August 11, 1819-September 4, 1904) was a prolific American painter known for his salt marsh landscapes, seascapes, portraits of tropical birds, and still lifes.

His painting style and subject matter, while derived from the romanticism of the time, is regarded by art historians as a significant departure from that of his peers. He was first taught by his father, Paul Joosten Wouwerman, an historical painter of moderate ability. Experimented with water and sky Sunset on the Sea
1872 Orchids and Hummingbird
c. 1875-83 Frederic Edwin Church The Heart of the Andes
1859 Though Church had rarely shared his teacher's taste for explicit moral and religious allegory in landscape art, he often disclosed both his patriotism and his piety

Source: Frederic Edwin Church (1826–1900) | Thematic Essay | Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History | The Metropolitan Museum of Art ** Laid the groundwork for post-Civil war landscape painters Post-Civil War Generation Landscape Painters Albert Bierstadt Thunderstorm in the Rocky Mountains
1859 "Transformed landscapes into grand-scale canvasses whose technical theatricality communicated the spirit of adventure associated with the West, and lifed the viewer into the contemplation of the sublime natural realm" -pbs.org Living in rural surroundings, Inness sought to make his paintings convey the profound spiritual meaning he felt the landscape around him possessed. -hrm.org
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