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Painting on the Dark Side > Chapter 1: Gloom and Doom

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message 1: by Kim (new)

Kim | 362 comments Mod
Here starts the beginning of this tome.


message 2: by Kim (new)

Kim | 362 comments Mod
Thomas Cole's "Lake with Dead Trees" in color: http://hamiltonauctiongalleries.com/C...




message 3: by Kim (new)

Kim | 362 comments Mod
I'm actually finding myself wanting to see "Lake with Dead Trees" without the deer. I wonder if he put them in as an after thought to make it seem less dismal. He does seem to have this constant contrast in his work of despair vs. hope. Here I see the hope as being that little patch of blue sky.


message 4: by Todd (new)

Todd (tekeller) | 55 comments Yes, i like that he seems to have story behind his work and even has written paragraphs about the subject matter.


message 5: by Kim (new)

Kim | 362 comments Mod
Yeah, that's interesting that he kind of wrote the backstory on his paintings. I wonder if that helped him visualize it stronger? Here's something to help us visualize, in color!: http://www.thomas-cole.info/the-compl...




message 6: by Kim (new)

Kim | 362 comments Mod
Cole's love of the wilderness/nature really shows through in his work. I love his landscapes but could do without the tiny people and animals he puts in to fit his allegories. I think the landscapes stand well by themselves. But I guess it was a genre for the time. Maybe doing just a majestic landscape was too radical? The interesting thing is that he is in effect making a historical document for the time. The U. S. is still wild in parts but will never be the wilderness it once was. Nor will the Indians be what they were or were perceived to be. My favorite is "Last of the Mohicans" . A friend just posted a picture of himself on facebook from a hiking trip he took on the Appalachian trail. He's sitting on a rock that juts out in space much like this with the mountains spread out into the distance. I get the feeling in this painting just as I did from my friend's photo, of the insignificance of man in presence of the vastness of nature's theater.


message 7: by Kim (new)

Kim | 362 comments Mod
Hmmm... interesting to get this historical insight of Cole's period. Even then, he and Poe felt free thinking could lead to destruction of their perfect society. Yet, he seemed to relish the wildness and danger of the nature that surrounded him. Ironic.


message 8: by Kim (new)

Kim | 362 comments Mod
Check this out: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Fil...
Claude Lorrain is such an obvious influence on Cole! Even the tiny figures on the landscape. He doesn't seem like much of an original, except that he was applying this kind of painting to the wilderness of America. Too bad Cole seemed to be confined by tradition. I can imagine if he painted today how magnificent his landscapes would be.


message 9: by Kim (last edited Jun 01, 2009 12:00AM) (new)

Kim | 362 comments Mod
And here's Constable's "Hadleigh Castle". http://www.artknowledgenews.com/Paul_... I'm thinking more and more the Cole was just an imitator, albeit a talented one.


message 10: by Kim (last edited Jun 28, 2009 02:26PM) (new)

Kim | 362 comments Mod
Hey, check this out folks: http://www.thomascole.org/trail/index...
If you want a taste of what it was like, though it's sure not to be as wild any more...
You can see some comparison photos of the current situation next to some of Cole's paintings on the same site. Quite interesting.


message 11: by Kim (new)

Kim | 362 comments Mod
Nearing the end of this chapter, at last.


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