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William H. Johnson

Midnight Sun, Lofoten
1937
oil
41 5/8 x 59 1/8 in.
Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of the Harmon Foundation

Johnson painted this scene on a summer trip to Norway, famed “land of the midnight sun.” Every day for a month he climbed the mountain peaks, which rise 2,000 feet above the sea, to capture this view. Using bold brushstrokes, the artist evokes the exotic lighting of the suspended midnight sun in a red-orange sky reflecting off the blue-green mountain peaks.