American Scenery 
Different Views in Hudson River School Painting



I. Introductory Pair:  Cole and Church

Thomas Cole (1801-1848), Sunset on the Arno, 1837

Frederick Church, Ruins at Baalbek, 1868

     These two paintings are by Thomas Cole and Frederick Church, founders of what became known as the Hudson River School. Depicting non-American themes, they provide a striking contrast to the American scenes that are represented in the paintings in this exhibition. Yet they too radiate the golden light contrasting with deep shadow and diffused illumination that is so characteristic of the Hudson River School. It is the light that is the subject of these paintings rather than the actual landscape, which only serves as a vehicle for a masterful presentation of a sunset.

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