ART 4 2-DAY 25 August v.10.40
Died on 25 August 1685: Francisco
de Herrera, el Mozo (o el Joven), Spanish artist born in
Seville in a year variously given from 1612 to 1627.
Known for his wit and temper, painter, draftsman, architect, and stage designer Francisco de Herrera the Younger was born the son of Francisco Herrera the Elder [1590-1656], an accomplished painter and engraver. After travels in Rome, he was in Madrid by 1650 and named in documents as a master painter. Four years later he received his first important painting commission, for the altarpiece of a convent church in Madrid. There he studied the works of Titian and Peter Paul Rubens and developed a High Baroque style favored by the court of King Philip IV. Herrera became renowned for his lively, dynamic compositions.
Although all of his existing paintings have religious themes, he was also known to paint secular subjects including portraits and still lifes. Upon the death of his father, Herrera returned to Seville around 1655 to collect his inheritance. He successfully re-established himself there, receiving numerous important painting commissions.
He returned to Madrid eight years later and began to make frescoes, all now destroyed. In 1677 Herrera was named Royal Architect, though he completed only one independent architectural commission. The Spanish Academy in Madrid named him as its head in 1680. He died in Madrid.
— Francisco Herrera the Younger spent many years in Italy, where he is said to have fled from his father's notoriously bad temper and may have studied architecture and fresco painting in Rome. He returned to Spain after his father's death and was appointed Murillo's deputy at the Academy of Seville when it was founded in 1660. Soon afterwards he moved to Madrid, where he was appointed Painter to the King Charles II in 1672 and Master of the Royal Works in 1677. His greatest achievement was the design (subsequently modified) of the church of El Pilar at Saragossa, begun in 1681. His work as a painter, airy and colorful, owed much to the example of Murillo.
The Triumph of Saint Hermenegild (1654, 328x229cm; 1000x685pix, 168kb _ ZOOM to 3021x2120pix, 1415kb) _ The Triumph of Saint Hermenegild and of the Catholic Church over Arianism. The saint rises up to heaven surrounded by angels carrying the symbols of his origin and martyrdom: the crown and scepter of a Visigothic king, on the left; and the chains and ax of his martyrdom, on the right. On the lower part of the painting are King Leovigild, dressed in armor, and an Arian Bishop with a chalice. The eldest son of the Visigothic King Leovigild, Hermenegild was converted to Catholicism by his wife, Ingunthis, assisted by Saint Leander, Bishop of Seville. In 585, after Hermenegild refused to receive Communion from an Arian bishop, he was imprisoned and martyred at the behest of his father. The helicoidal composition and very low point of view are characteristics developed by Herrera following his visit to Italy.
–- Saint Thomas Aquinas (1656, 82x60cm; 1346x977pix, 163kb) _ Herrera must have painted this during his stay in Seville, which lasted until 1660, the year in which he became one of the founders of the Academia de Pintura, which is also the year in which he returned for good to Madrid.
— Saint Francis Receives the Stigmata (1657, 570x363cm; 1069x700pix, 96kb)
The Coronation of the Virgin
–- Christ Bearing the Cross (18x13cm; 1103x785pix, 94kb) monochrome sketch.
Born on 25 August 1891: Andrea
Francesco Alberto De Chirico “Alberto Savinio”
[–05 May 1952], Italian surrealist
painter, writer, musician, journalist, essayist, playwright, set designer,
and composer, born in Athens, Greece; not to be confused with his brother
De Chirico [10
July 1888 – 19 Nov 1978]. His work often dealt with philosophical
and psychological themes, and he also was deeply concerned with the philosophy
— Savinio was something of a musical prodigy, graduating with honors in piano and composition from the Athens Conservatory at the age of 12. By 1906, he was studying under Max Reger in Munich, and he composed an opera, Carmela, at the age of 17. The prospects in Italy proved disappointing and, after a concert given in Munich, Savinio left for Paris in 1910.
— Andrea De Chirico, più noto con lo pseudonimo di Alberto Savinio, era il fratello minore di Giorgio De Chirico. Come il fratello, nacque in Grecia, per poi studiare a Monaco e trasferirsi quindi a Parigi. Arrivò alla pittura tardi: iniziò a dipingere solo nel 1927, all’età di trentasei anni. Aveva iniziato la sua attività artistica come musicista e compositore. Si era poi dedicato alla letteratura. Egli è stato, pertanto, sia musicista, sia scrittore, sia pittore.
La sua attività di pittore iniziò a Parigi in pieno surrealismo, ed egli, nonostante gli inviti contrari del fratello Giorgio, entrò a far parte del movimento. Tuttavia, il suo stile rimane molto singolare, in una zona intermedia tra surrealismo e metafisica.
La sua è una pittura ricca di significati simbolici e intessuta di notevoli riferimenti culturali. Non ha l’immediatezza comunicativa di altri pittori surrealisti, ma richiede un approccio colto per poter apprezzare appieno il sottile gioco dei vari non-sens che egli attua sui materiali della memoria culturale. In questo caso lo spostamento di senso che egli attua riguarda quelle immagini, o figure retoriche, sempre molto lontane, che sono le radici della nostra cultura e del nostro pensiero.
Uno dei tratti più tipici del suo stile è la metamorfosi uomo-animale che compare di frequente nei suoi quadri. Le affinità caratteriali che possono esistere tra gli animali e l’uomo è un concetto antichissimo. La volpe per la sua astuzia, o il cane per la sua fedeltà, possono tranquillamente divenire simbolo, o immagine, di uomini astuti o fedeli. Questo simbolismo, in Savinio, acquista un significato più complesso. Egli si basa in effetti sia sul concetto positivistico (che i tratti somatici sono determinati dal carattere) sia su nozioni della psicologia tedesca di inizio secolo (seconda la quale il carattere avrebbe portato una persona ad assomigliare ad un animale molto preciso, frutto dell’emergere del suo particolare lato bestiale).
Egli, quindi, nei suoi quadri attua una particolare metamorfosi tra uomini e animali, dove ad una struttura corporea decisamente umana si sovrappone una testa non umana. Lo fa anche per il ritratto dei propri genitori, dove la madre ha la testa che sembra quella di un pellicano e il padre ha la testa di un cervo. Come egli stesso dice, la metamorfosi uomo-animale: «è la ricerca del carattere, di là dagli eufemismi della natura, di là dalle correzioni della civiltà, di là dagli abbellimenti dell’arte». — wikibio
— Le rêve du poète (1927, 118x88cm; 529x400pix, 47kb)
–- Le contrarietà del pensatore (1915, 46x38cm; 816x672pix, 41kb)
–- Annunciazione (1932; 744x566pix, 50kb) _ Il dipinto si presenta originale già per il suo formato: la tela non è rettangolare ma pentagonale per effetto del taglio dell’angolo superiore sinistro. Il campo dell’immagine è dominato dalla finestra da cui compare il faccione enorme dell’arcangelo Gabriele. La Madonna è seduta, in basso a sinistra, ed ha la caratteristica metamorfosi da donna a pellicano che Savinio aveva già utilizzato per il ritratto della propria madre.
La finestra ha una deformazione tipica da espressionismo tedesco. È aperta su un cielo scuro e cupo. Da essa appare il volto dell’angelo, gigantesco nelle sue proporzioni, come il mistero di cui è simbolo. La Madonna ha la testa di pellicano, dato che esso è, già dal Medioevo, simbolo della bontà e dell’amore materno, perché si riteneva che il pellicano, in caso di necessità, fosse capace di svenarsi col becco e di nutrire la prole con il proprio sangue.
L’Annunciazione è uno dei soggetti più rappresentati in assoluto nella storia dell’arte occidentale. L’immagine ha una iconografia e un suo significato religioso ben preciso, a cui si sono sempre attenuti tutti gli innumerevoli pittori che lo hanno rappresentato. Per la religione cattolica l’Annunciazione sta ad indicare che la nascita di Gesù non deriva da un normale concepimento, e in ciò già si manifesta la sua vera natura divina.
Come tema pittorico l’Annunciazione scompare dalla scena artistica a partire dal XVIII secolo, quando gli artisti maggiori cominciano ad operare in una società più laica e con minore dipendenza dalla committenza ecclesiastica. Il tema dell’Annunciazione viene, in qualche caso, utilizzato più per il suo significato allegorico che non per il suo significato religioso. È il caso, ad esempio, di Dante Gabriele Rossetti che, con il suo Ecce ancilla domini, indaga sul significato universale del divenire madre a partire dal mutamento di coscienza che, nella donna, comporta la notizia di una maternità.
In Savinio l’Annunciazione diviene un soggetto per rappresentare il rapporto tra l’uomo e la divinità. Ossia, il rapporto tra l’uomo e il sacro, che si presenta alla finestra dei nostri piccoli spazi come qualcosa di gigantesco. Enorme, come il mistero della nascita e della sua sacralità, che travalica il semplice significato dell’apparire di una nuova vita.
–- Niobe (1119x1341pix, 193kb)
— La cité des promesses (1928; 1003x1500pix, 637kb)
— Objets dans la forêt (1928; 1189x1500pix, 568kb)
— Souvenir d'un monde disparu (1928; 1132x1500pix, 759kb)
— Il fiume (1950; 1114x1500pix, 482kb)
–- Giove (1933, 32x26cm; 1125x888pix, 149kb)
–- La Vendemmia (92x65cm; 1125x764pix, 79kb)
–- Gomorrhe (1929, 59x72cm; 1889x2064pix, 360kb) senza finestra _ Molti titoli ed iconografie delle tele saviniane datate tra 1928 e 1932 fanno riferimento, come nel caso di questa opera, a momenti della storia biblica o ad aspetti e problemi della cultura ebraica e della religione cristiana; Savinio stesso dichiara nei suoi scritti di essere attento lettore della Bibbia. Il dipinto qui esposto (come il correlato Sodome dello 1929) si può leggere come un esempio significativo della capacità saviniana di accordare i singoli elementi compositivi all’idea centrale dell’opera; ogni particolare, anche apparentemente secondario, è significante e mai descrittivo. In Gomorrhe lampi nel cielo e tende rigonfie segnalano immediatamente l’eccezionalità dell’evento e l’agglomerato degli oggetti colorati in volo, pur fantastico, ha un’effettiva capacità di evocare il volo degli angeli del racconto biblico che con saette e colate di fuoco distruggono la città di Sodoma colpevole di avere sovvertito le leggi ebraiche. I significati dell’opera non sono affidati quindi a immagini di tipo allegorico o simbolico, ma scaturiscono dalle proprietà analogiche e allusive delle forme e dei colori. La città di Gomorra, che subisce la punizione divina — e che quindi è il peccato, il male — è monocroma, mentre gli angeli giustizieri sono un trionfo di cromie brillanti e decise. La storia, il peccato, l’ira divina, gli angeli sono in realtà elementi di una “scena” ricostruita e osservata.
Died on 25 August 1926: Thomas
Moran, US Hudson
River School painter, born on 12 February 1837. He specialized in Landscapes
US West. His Western landscapes inspired US citizens to conserve their
most spectacular wilderness areas as part of their national heritage. He
was the brother of Peter Moran [1841-1914], who specialized in painting
animals in landscapes, John Moran [1831-1902], a landscape photographer,
and Edward Moran [19 Aug 1829 – 09
Jun 1901], about whom Thomas stated “He taught the rest of us Morans
all we know about art.”
Thomas Moran was born in Bolton, England. He moved to Kensington, Pennsylvania in 1844, after his father, a hand-loom weaver, was replaced by machine during the Industrial Revolution. After completing his primary education, Thomas entered an apprenticeship with an engraving firm. It wasn't soon after, that he terminated the apprenticeship to join his brother Edward, an aspiring artist, in his studio.
Moran began to study informally under several painters in the Philadelphia area. In the early 1860's, his brother encouraged Thomas to display his paintings. Often they would take excursions to the Pennsylvanian forests on sketching trips. Moran would return to the studio and reproduce the fascinating landscapes, with extraordinary detail, such at The Autumnal Woods.
At about this time, Moran became vividly interested in the works of J.M.W. Turner, an English landscape artist. Joined by his brother, he traveled back to England in 1862 to following the sketching route used by Turner along the England coastline.
In 1866, Moran once again returned to Europe to continue his study of the European masters, and to exhibit some of his own major early work, Children of the Mountain, in the Exposition Universelle in Paris. This painting was used four years later to help finance his first western trip, and ultimately, change the course of his career.
In 1871, Thomas was requested by Scribner's Magazine, to rework some sketches that had been submitted, for an upcoming article Titled "The Wonders of Yellowstone." This would be the first extensive description of the Yellowstone landscape, to be published in the East. Moran quickly arranged to join a government-sponsored survey of Yellowstone, that would be led by Ferdinand V. Hayden, a geologist that was being sent to measure and map the area. Moran rapidly adapted to life on the trail, and on 11 July 1871 he wrote:
Passed over debris of a great land slide, where the whole face of the mountain had fallen down at some time, laying bare a great cliff some 500 feet high. The view of the lake, as we approached it, was very beautiful. . . The Mountains surrounding it are about 11'000 feet high. . . having snow still upon them. . . After descending to the shore of the lake, some of the party fished in it & caught a few of the finest trout that I have ever seen. After a rest. . . all the party started back for camp excepting Jackson, Dixon & myself, we having concluded to remain over until the next day for the purpose of photographing & sketching in the vicinity. Made a large fire & cooked our supper of black tailed deer meat. . . During the night it rained a little but not enough to wet us to any extent. Got up early enough in the morning to get our breakfast, and commence photographing as soon as the sun rose.
During the trip, he completed dozens of watercolor studies. These were the first color images of Yellowstone ever seen in the East, and served as the basis for his paintings. He worked closely with the expedition photographer, William Henry Jackson, and produced water color paintings of the waterfalls, geysers, and hot springs of Yellowstone, including The Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone.
Soon after Moran returned east, Hayden and others, began promoting the idea that Yellowstone should be protected and preserved as a national park. Since none of the members of Congress had seen Yellowstone, Hayden and his colleagues brought Moran's watercolors, along with the photographs taken by Jackson, to Capitol Hill. It was reported that these played a decisive role in the establishment of Yellowstone as the first national park in March 1872. Congress later appropriated $10'000 for the purchase of Moran's Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone. The seven by twelve foot painting offers panoramic view of Yellowstone Canyon featured the distant falls and a striking display of the canyon's golden walls. In the foreground Moran placed a group of figures that includes Hayden, and the artist himself. This purchase was followed by a second one, two years later, of a landscape titled Chasm of the Colorado, from Moran's 1873 trip to the Grand Canyon of the Colorado River with John Wesley Powell.
third great western landscape was completed in 1875. This time the subject
matter was a famous Colorado peak, renown for a cross of snow on its side.
Moran approached the endeavor with the same liberty he had seen exhibited
by Turner, during his trek through England. The finished landscape, Mountain
of the Holy Cross, included a waterfall in the foreground that Moran
invented, in his attempt to capture the true impression of the scene.
By 1876, Thomas Moran had established himself as one of the major landscape painters of his day. Moran's medium of choice was watercolor, and he would take watercolor sketches from the field, and use them as the basis for studio variations. One series of images centered around the Great Springs of the Fire Hole River. Clearly visible underneath watercolored brushstrokes of color across the upper portion and the lower left portion of the painting, are the pencil sketchings and notes enter by Moran while developing the picture. Louis Prang published this study of the Great Springs in a color portfolio, which brought rave reviews. For the first time, both Yellowstone and Thomas Moran became available to a wider audience, that had never had the opportunity to view and appreciate either of these two wonders. Mouse over image at right to see detail of field notes
Thomas Moran was a man with a broad spectrum of interests, and was never at a lost for inspiration. While the popularity of his paintings of the West soared, Moran worked on other subjects that had peaked his creative instincts, including coastal life, pastoral settings, urban and industrial views and historical scenes.
During the 1880's Moran relocated his studio to East Hampton, Long Island, closely situated to the beach. The move renewed his interest in marine painting, and he eagerly began painting the sea, it's temperaments and disasters of shipwrecks that occurred along the eastern shore of Long Island. It was during this same time that Moran furtherexplored other themes for his paintings, and soon, his pastoral depictions of Long Island, were as much in demand as his western landscapes. Thomas delved into scenes of urban and industrial imagery, most notably in Lower Manhattan from Communipaw. This painting viewed the Manhattan skyline from a sugar refinery located across the Hudson River, in New Jersey. Moran displayed his ability to effectively capture the reflection of the city upon the sunlit water.
In 1882, Moran returned to Bolton, England, with his family for an exhibition of his works. Included in the exhibition were over a hundred watercolors, 22 oil paintings, 25 illustrations from Longfellow's Hiawatha, the complete set of Prang chromolithographs of Yellowstone, and a series of etchings and proof engravings. The show was a triumphant success, and Thomas sold nearly all of the works displayed, before he returned home.
Remaining an enthusiastic traveler, Moran left for Cuba and Mexico shortly after his return from England. Moran explored the countries, on his endless search for new subject matter, and returned with a large number of sketches. Of particular interest to him, was the Trojes Mine in central Mexico, which he recreated in several extraordinary paintings.
During 1886, Thomas Moran traveled to Venice, Italy, visiting the city that he had seen depicted in Turner's paintings. Moran traveled to sites, developing watercolor sketches of them, that he would return home with, to produce studio paintings. His previous technique of concentrating on a central object, and freely building foreground elements, again came into play. The Fisherman's Wedding Party displayed this method of painting, as notable venetian buildings are seen across the center of the painting, and gondolas and boats are placed in the foreground with costumed figures. These paintings became extremely popular in the United States during the end of the 1800's, due to the romantic and poetic imagery they projected. The US was bustling with activity as industry and advancements in technology was thrusting the country forward at a frightening rate of speed. Moran's paintings offered viewers the chance to stop back and take a breath, as they slipped back to a slower, easier time.
Moran made plans to return west with another of his brothers, Peter, to gather material for more paintings. The pair travel throughout the Sierra Nevada range stopping outside of Salt Lake City and Lake Tahoe to sketch, before heading up toward the Snake River in Idaho. The brothers stopped by the Teton Mountains, where Thomas was able to view the Teton peak that Hayden had named "Mount Moran" in his honor. Moran returned to his studio after the trip, painting The Three Tetons.
joined his longtime friend Jackson, during 1892, when they returned to the
Grand Canyon, and later Yellowstone. Resulting from this expedition were
a painting titled Golden Gateway to the Yellowstone and a sketch,
which he called In the Lava Beds.
During this period, Thomas Moran continued to also paint the Long Island landscapes, that had become favored in the east coast market. While he enjoyed the subject matter, he stated to a reporter, "I prefer to paint western scenes, but the Eastern people don't appreciate the grand scenery of the Rockies. They are not familiar with mountain effects and it is much easier to sell a picture of a Long Island swamp than the grandest picture of Colorado." Moran's colleagues marveled at his dual ability to vividly portray the US wilderness of the west, and the paint serene views like, June, East Hampton (1895).
After the death of his wife in 1900, Thomas Moran returned to Yellowstone with his youngest daughter Ruth. In route to Yellowstone, they stopped in Utah and Idaho, where they journeyed by stage coach to Shoshone Falls on the Snake River. It was here that Moran created the last of his great major western landscape. Shoshone Falls on the Snake River, measured an impressive six by 11 feet, suggesting that Moran had hoped it be part of a special exhibition. The following year, the painting took the silver medal at the Pan-American Exposition, but strangely, it remained unsold at the time of his death. Moran's interpretation of Shoshone Falls would be one of the last, as a reclamation project, utilizing the Snake River as a source of irrigation water, began in the next decade.
Thomas and Ruth would return to the Grand Canyon over the next two decades, for the winter months. Moran offered paintings of the canyon in exchange for rail passes and hotel accommodations. They images were used in advertisements in hotels, offices, railway cars, and even on stationary and calendars. He also entered into a business relationship with the Santa Fe Railroad, which had commissioned him to produce a painting of the Grand Canyon, for marketing purposes. Moran, soon became closely identified with the Grand Canyon, and the railroad used his image in their advertisements.
Thomas Moran would eventually be known as the "father" of the national park system. His paintings of landscapes brought the western wilderness to the attention of the country. While the parks have been protected by actions of Congress, business has prospered outside the park gates. Moran maintained his love for the beauty of the American wilderness throughout it life, and continued painting it well into the 1920's. After returning from a trip to Europe, Moran proclaimed, "I looked at the Alps, but they are nothing compared to the majestic grandeur of our wonderful Rockies. I have painted them all my life and I shall continue to paint them as long as I can hold a brush. I am working as hard as I ever did...." Moran died at his home in Santa Barbara, California.
Thomas Moran was a painter of Irish ancestry, born (like Thomas Cole) in Lancashire and raised in Philadelphia. Unlike Bierstadt, this son of poor immigrant handweavers was entirely self-taught. He got some training as an engraver and opened an engraving business with his two brothers. But his heart was in painting, and his predilections intensely, youthfully Romantic. One of his earliest paintings, Among the Ruins-There He Lingered (1856), took its title from Shelley's Alastor; or, The Spirit of Solitude (1815), in which the pure young poet is imagined pursuing "Nature's most secret steps," where'er / The red volcano overcanopies / Its fields of snow and pinnacles of ice / With burning smoke, or where bitumen lakes / On black bare pointed islets ever beat / With sluggish surge....
Shelley's imaginary landscape predicts the real one of Yellowstone that Moran would eventually paint. Indeed, one dealer was later able to sell a very early Moran entitled Childe Roland under a new and topographical title, The Lava Beds of Idaho. And Moran would always be on the lookout for the sublime, the exceptional, and the picturesque landscapes that satisfied the Romantic prototype. Only the great scene, he viscerally believed, could produce the great picture. He would find such scenes in the West, and nowhere else.
rationalized his lack of formal training, as the self-taught are apt to
do, with the belief that art was not "teachable." "You can't teach an artist
much how to paint," he would declare in his later years. "I used to think
it was teachable, but I have come to feel that there is an ability to see
nature, and unless it is within the man, it is useless to try and impart
it." Nevertheless, the example of two painters obsessed him: Claude Lorrain
He was able to spend a year in England in 1861 studying Turner and copying
his works in oil and watercolor: in particular, Ulysses
Deriding Polyphemus (1829), the central picture in Turner's career.
Moran kept his full-size copy of Ulysses in his studio thereafter,
and it is not difficult to see why the painting had such a deep effect on
him. Its high-keyed, unusually saturated color yellows, ochers, crimsons,
and rolling tracts of impasted white cloud is just what Moran would
reach for in his landscapes of the Green River and of Yellowstone. Turner's
vision of Polyphemus' island, the crags on which the giant mistily reclines,
is remembered in Moran's later visions or, as he insisted, accurate
transcriptions of Western scenery.
The turning point in Moran's career came in 1871, when Dr. Ferdinand Hayden, director of the US Geological Survey, invited him to join an expedition into the Yellowstone area of Wyoming. At that time Yellowstone was terra incognita to the Whites. It was known, for its hot mud lakes, geysers, and constant geothermal activity, as "the place where Hell bubbled up," but apart from a few mountain men and trappers, the only white man to describe it had been John Coulter, a member of Lewis and Clark's expedition, who strayed into it in 1807. The expedition was backed by the US government, and Moran's role was funded partly by the directors of the Northern Pacific Railroad - who reasoned, shrewdly, that the circulation of Moran's images of Yellowstone, and the publicity they got, might help create a new tourist destination and thus a profitable new railroad line.
Besides Moran, Hayden brought along a former stagecoach driver turned photographer, William Henry Jackson. The two had worked together before: Jackson had accompanied the painter Sanford Gifford on Hayden's 1869 survey of Wyoming, and the two had made parallel images of the same scenes. With his cumbersome cameras, tripods, developing equipment, and fragile glass plates (some of them twenty by twenty-four inches, yielding the largest outdoor photographs ever attempted) all loaded onto pack mules, Jackson now worked alongside Moran. He provided the objective record of Yellowstone's world of wonders, for a public which believed the camera couldn't lie. Moran's watercolors, more interpretative, supplied the color. The photographs confirmed the reality of Moran's strange sketches of fumaroles, sulfur pinnacles, and Dantesque hot lakes. To those back east who saw them on his return to New York, Moran's watercolors of Yellowstone looked as thrillingly alien as the first photos from the moon would a century later. Yet there were some scenes whose scale and grandeur neither a plate negative nor a watercolor could adequately convey, and one of these was the direct view down the chasm of Yellowstone, toward the falls.
Hayden remembered Moran saying "with a sort of regretful enthusiasm, that these beautiful tints were beyond the reach of human art." What the sketchbook could not encompass, however, memory and imagination perhaps could, and as soon as he got back to New York, Moran ordered an 2.4x4.3 meter canvas and flung himself into work on the climactic panorama of the US's years of Western expansion: The Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone.
Meanwhile, Hayden had been busy lobbying Congress, with the enthusiastic backing of the Northern Pacific Railroad's directors, to set aside Yellowstone as a national park a museum of US sublimity. To prove its uniqueness, he displayed Moran's sketches and Jackson's photographs; and in March 1871 President Grant signed into law an act of Congress protecting the whole Yellowstone area, 5800 square kilometers, in perpetuity. This was to do wonders for the Northern Pacific Railroad's cash flow and, not incidentally, for Moran's. The Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone became the first US landscape by a US artist ever bought by the US government. It cost $10'000, and it went straight on view in the Capitol, where the effigies of so many flesh-and-blood heroes were to be seen. This, too, was a painting of a hero: the landscape as hero, limbs of rock, belly of water, hair of trees, all done with absorbing virtuosity. It rivaled Church and outdid Bierstadt in offering the panoramic thrill that no watercolor can give, and the density of substance that no photograph could rival. It became a prime symbol of wilderness tourism. Two years later, Moran tried to repeat its success with an even larger canvas, The Chasm of the Colorado, the result of an expedition down the Grand Canyon led by Colonel John Wesley Powell, another surveyor who needed, as he put it, an artist of Moran's stature to paint scenes that were "too vast, too complex, and too grand for verbal description." Moran certainly did his best, but the Canyon defeated him as it has defeated all landscape painters since; not even he could solve the principal problem of painting it, the lack of any scale that related to the human body and so might allow the viewer to imagine himself on the edge of the scene.
— A Scene on the Tohickon Creek: Autumn (1868, 76x114cm; 685x1012pix, 625kb _ ZOOM to 1665x2460pix, 3662kb)
–- Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone, Wyoming (1906, 51x76cm; 3/8 size, 179 kb _ .ZOOM to 3/4 size, 687kb)
–- Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone (1893, 50x40cm; half~size, 202 kb _ .ZOOM to full size, 747kb)
–- The Great Blue Spring of the Lower Geyser Basin (739x1059pix, 60kb)
–- Grand Canyon with Rainbow (1912, 63x76cm; xpix, 170kb _ /F#*>.ZOOM to 3/4 size, 720kb)
— View of Venice (1888; 115kb)
— The Grand Canal (1889; 106kb)
— Chicago World's Fair (1894; 153kb)
Mountain of the Holy Cross (1875, 208x163cm)
Slaves Escaping Through the Swamp (1862; 188kb)
— The Autumnal Woods aka Under the Trees (1865; 265kb)
— Children of the Mountain, Sierra Nevada, California (1866; 245kb)
— Upper Falls, Yellowstone (1871; 119kb)
— Tower Falls (1872; 135kb)
— The Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone (1872; 89kb; 490x895pix, 89kb)
— Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone (1872; 118kb; 485x796pix, 118kb)
— Grand Canyon of the Colorado (1915; 122kb)
— Lower Falls, Yellowstone Canyon (1919; 163kb)
— Grand Canyon (1921; 561x700pix, 118kb)
— Great Falls of Yellowstone (1898; 141kb)
— Shoshone Falls on the Snake River (1900; 93kb)
— Cliffs, Green River, Wyoming (1872; 86kb)
— Cliffs of the Rio Virgin, South Utah (1873; 95kb)
— Green River Cliffs, Wyoming (1881; 77kb)
— Pass at Glencoe, Scotland (1882; 90kb)
— Gathering Storm near Maravatio, Mexico (1883; 130kb)
— Vera Cruz Harbor, Mexico (1884; 115kb)
— A Pastoral Landscape (1889; 141kb)
— June, East Hampton (1895; 142kb)
— Cathedral Rock (1902; 94kb)
— Bright Angel Trail (1904; 162kb)
— Indian Pueblo, Laguna, New Mexico (1905; 142kb)
— The Sentinel, Yosemite Valley (1908; 117kb)
— Tantallon Castle, North Berwick, Scotland (1910; 156kb)
— An Indian Paradise, Green River, Wyoming (1911; 141kb)
— Index Peak, Yellowstone National Park (1914; 82kb)
— Hopi Village, Arizona (1916; 113kb)
— Cinnabar Mountain, Yellowstone River (1871, 26x36cm; 746x1014pix, 71kb)
— 243 images at the Athenaeum