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Niagara Falls

1885 George Inness Born: Newburgh, New York 1825 Died: Bridge of Allan, Scotland 1894 oil on wood 15 7/8 x 24 in. (40.2 x 60.9 cm.) Smithsonian American Art Museum Gift of John Gellatly 1929.6.67 Smithsonian American Art Museum
Luce Foundation Center, 4th Floor, 52A


Luce Center Quote

"The true purpose of a painter is simply to reproduce in other minds the impression which a scene has made upon him." George Inness, quoted in Alfred Werner, Inness Landscapes, 1973

Luce Center Label

Niagara Falls is one of the most frequently painted and photographed landscapes in the United States. George Inness produced seven oil paintings of the falls during the 1880s and 1890s, more than he made of any other area at that time. By 1895, the area around Niagara Falls had become commercialized with many hotels, souvenir shops, and attractions. Inness wanted to reclaim the natural "terror and awe" of the falls, and so obliterated all evidence of bridges, hotels, and signs in his paintings.

Keywords

Landscape - waterfall - Niagara Falls

painting

paint - oil

wood