Saturday, June 27, 2015

Frederic Edwin Church

Niagara Falls
oil on canvas
106.5 x 229.9 cm
Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., USA

Frederic Edwin Church (1826-1900) was an American Romantic landscape painter. He was one of the most prominent members of the Hudson River school. He studied at his home in Catskill, New York. From the beginning he sought for his subjects marvels of nature such as Niagara Falls, volcanoes in eruption, and icebergs. He was greatly influenced by the writings of Alexander von Humboldt, the German naturalist. Through his use of light and colour and his depiction of natural phenomena such as rainbows, mist, and sunsets, he created renderings that were realistic and emotionally affecting.

In 1849 he was made a member of the National Academy of Design. In his lifetime, he received great praise for his work and sold his paintings for high prices. He died at Olana, his house on the Hudson River, which is now a museum.