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Hudson River School
Museum-Quality Landscape Photography Prints
These fine art landscape photos are part of a historic lineage of 19th century American art called "The Hudson River School". Featuring atmospheric lighting effects within grand landscapes and bucolic scenes, artists such as Thomas Cole, Albert Bierstadt and Frederic Church were the first to paint these scenes of the American landscape.
This Hudson River School fine art photo gallery features some of the most incredible fleeting moments of light that I’ve photographed over the years. Natural light is most of the most powerful elements that a photographer can use to tell a visual story. For these photos I've chased the light then found a suitable foreground element that complements the light. There is no greater thrill in photography than to witness and capture unique lighting conditions.
Museum-quality limited & open edition fine art landscape photography prints available for sale. My website shopping cart is powered by PayPal and accepts all major credit cards for payment. Please email or call me if have any questions.
Established in 1825, the Hudson River School was the first native American art movement and was founded by Thomas Cole and Asher Durand. The mid-19th century movement was known for its romanticized landscapes of the American wilderness, which were inspired by the Hudson River Valley in upstate New York.
The Hudson River School was a reaction to the traditional European art movements of the time, which focused on classical and religious themes. Instead, these artists focused on the American landscape, which served as a metaphor for the nation’s rugged individualism and democratic values. This was in stark contrast to the European art of the time, which was often grandiose and idealized.
The Hudson River School artists were known for their detailed and realistic depictions of the American landscape. They used a variety of techniques, including the use of light and shadow to create a sense of depth and atmosphere. The works were often painted in a realistic style, with a focus on conveying the beauty of the natural world.
The Hudson River School was influential in the development of American art, as it provided a distinctly American style of painting. It also helped to popularize the idea of the wilderness as a place of beauty and grandeur. In addition, the movement was influential in the development of the environmental conservation movement and the preservation of the nation’s natural resources. The works of the Hudson River School artists are still appreciated today, and serve as a reminder of the nation’s unique cultural heritage.
Who Are Some Famous Artists From The Hudson River School?
Frederic Erwin Church
Sanford Robinson Gifford
Thomas Cole (1801 - 1848)
Thomas Cole was the founder of the Hudson River School. He was an English immigrant who came to the United States in 1818 and settled in Ohio. He soon became fascinated with the American wilderness, and he began to paint landscapes of the Hudson River Valley.
Cole's work is characterized by his interest in nature and his romantic sensibility. He often painted landscapes that were both beautiful and sublime, featuring vast expanses of wilderness, rugged terrain, and dramatic natural features.
Cole's most famous works is probably "The Course of Empire," a series of five paintings created between 1833 to 1836 that depict the rise and fall of a civilization. The series was a commentary on the dangers of industrialization and the need to protect nature.
Asher Durand (1796-1886)
Asher Durand was one of the most important painters of the Hudson River School. He was born in New Jersey and became interested in art at an early age. He studied under the artist Peter Maverick and later became a successful engraver.
Durand's paintings are known for their attention to detail and their precise rendering of the natural world. He often painted realistic depictions of landscapes, focusing on the subtle variations in color and light.
One of Durand's most famous paintings is "Kindred Spirits," a portrait of Thomas Cole and the poet William Cullen Bryant. The painting was a tribute to Cole, who had recently died, and to the ideals of the Hudson River School.
Frederic Edwin Church (1826-1900)
Frederic Edwin Church was a student of Thomas Cole and one of the most famous painters of the Hudson River School. He was born in Connecticut and began painting landscapes at a young age. He studied under Cole and soon became known for his sweeping, panoramic views of the American wilderness.
Church's paintings are characterized by their grandeur and their sense of awe. He often painted landscapes that were larger than life, featuring towering mountains, vast expanses of water, and dramatic sunsets.
One of Church's most famous paintings is "The Heart of the Andes," a massive painting that depicts the beauty and grandeur of the South American landscape. The painting was a sensation when it was first exhibited, and it cemented Church's reputation as one of the greatest painters of the 19th century.
Albert Bierstadt (1830-1902)
Albert Bierstadt was a German immigrant who became one of the most famous painters of the Hudson River School. He was born in Solingen, Germany, and he came to the United States as a child. He later studied art in Dusseldorf and traveled extensively throughout Europe.
Bierstadt's paintings are characterized by their grand scale and romanticized depictions of the American West. His works often featured expansive views of sweeping vistas, majestic mountain ranges, and pristine alpine lakes. His love of the American landscape is evident in his works, which often depicted unspoiled, untamed wilderness.
One of Bierstadt's most famous works is his painting "The Rocky Mountains, Lander's Peak," which was completed in 1863. This painting captures the grandeur and awe-inspiring beauty of the Rocky Mountains, with their towering peaks and rugged terrain. Bierstadt's use of light and color in this painting is especially notable, as he skillfully captures the changing moods and atmospheric effects of the landscape.
Another famous work by Bierstadt is "Valley of the Yosemite," completed in 1864. This painting depicts the stunning beauty of Yosemite National Park, with its towering granite cliffs, cascading waterfalls, and lush valley. Bierstadt's attention to detail in this painting is remarkable, as he captures the intricate textures and subtle nuances of the landscape.
Bierstadt was also known for his paintings of Native Americans, which often portrayed them as noble and heroic figures. One such painting, "The Last of the Buffalo," depicts a group of Native Americans standing amidst a vast herd of buffalo, which were on the brink of extinction during Bierstadt's time.
Today, Bierstadt's paintings remain some of the most iconic and beloved examples of the Hudson River School. His works continue to inspire and captivate viewers with their grandeur, beauty, and romanticized depictions of the American West.
Sanford Robinson Gifford (1823-1880)
Sanford Gifford was one of the most influential painters of the Hudson River School, known for his stunning depictions of the American landscape. Gifford was born in Greenfield, New York, and he studied art in New York City under the tutelage of the esteemed painter John Rubens Smith.
Gifford's paintings often featured dramatic, sweeping views of the American wilderness, with a particular focus on the play of light and atmosphere on the landscape. His works were notable for their luminous quality, which he achieved through his masterful use of color and light.
One of Gifford's most famous works is "A Coming Storm," completed in 1863. This painting depicts a sweeping vista of the Hudson River Valley, with dark storm clouds gathering in the distance. Gifford's use of light and shadow in this painting is especially noteworthy, as he captures the intense drama and tension of the approaching storm.
Another notable work by Gifford is "Lake Nemi," completed in 1857. This painting depicts a tranquil lake surrounded by lush, green foliage. Gifford's attention to detail and his mastery of color and light are on full display in this work, which captures the serene beauty of the Italian countryside.
Gifford was also known for his paintings of the American West, which he visited several times during his career. His works from this period often feature sweeping vistas of the Rocky Mountains, with their rugged peaks and rolling hills. One such painting, "Mount Tacoma," completed in 1875, depicts the majesty of Mount Rainier in Washington state, with its snow-capped summit rising above the Puget Sound.