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The Birches of the Catskills

ca. 1875 Worthington Whittredge Born: Springfield, Ohio 1820 Died: Summit, New Jersey 1910 oil on canvas mounted on paperboard 13 1/4 x 7 3/4 in. (33.5 x 19.8 cm) Smithsonian American Art Museum Gift of William Katzenbach 1967.144 Smithsonian American Art Museum
Luce Foundation Center, 3rd Floor, 13B


Luce Center Label

Worthington Whittredge found it difficult to adjust to painting the New England landscape after almost ten years abroad. He described the forests as “a mass of decaying logs and tangled brush wood” that were completely different from the “well-ordered” European views he was used to. (The Autobiography of Worthington Whittredge, 1942, reprinted in Janson, Worthington Whittredge, 1989) The broad brushstrokes of The Birches of the Catskills suggest that Whittredge painted the small canvas on the spot. The disordered view of tall trees, fallen branches, and undergrowth emphasizes the untamed quality that had initially unsettled the artist.

Keywords

Landscape - mountain - Catskill Mountains

Landscape - New York

Landscape - tree - birch tree

Landscape - water

painting

About Worthington Whittredge

Born: Springfield, Ohio 1820 Died: Summit, New Jersey 1910

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Worthington Whittredge