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George Inness
September Afternoon
1887
oil
37 1/2 x 29 in.
Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of William T. Evans



Near the horizon, farmers gather hay to provide for the approaching winter, while women and a child linger in the late September afternoon. The drama of this pastoral scene, however, is revealed in the sky, where a brilliant white cloud is disappearing behind a large mass of trees while the balance of the sky begins to darken as bad weather rolls in. The colors in this landscape are heightened by the dramatic play of light and shadow.