Falls of Niagara by Rembrandt Peale
Falls of Niagara by Rembrandt Peale Falls of Niagara by Rembrandt Peale
Falls of Niagara by Rembrandt Peale

Falls of Niagara by Rembrandt Peale

  • The great American painter Rembrandt Peale composed this view of Niagara Falls
  • He captures the largest of the three waterfalls on the Niagara River, Horseshoe Falls
  • It is one of the very few landscape paintings ever made by the celebrated portrait painter
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Item No. 30-8877
$98,500
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Rembrandt Peale
1778-1860 | American

Falls of Niagara

Signed and inscribed "Falls of Niagara (horse-shoe portion) view from Goat Island looking towards the Canada shore painted by Rembrandt Peale" (en verso)
Oil on canvas

This view of Niagara Falls was composed by the great American painter Rembrandt Peale. He deftly captures Horseshoe Falls, the largest of the three waterfalls that collectively form the Falls of the Niagara River. Viewed from Goat Island, the majestic view takes on a golden glow in this evening scene as Peale explores the atmosphere and light effects of the setting sun. One of the very few landscape paintings ever composed by this American master, it is a rarity of early American art.

Born in 1778 on George Washington's birthday, Rembrandt Peale was the second son of Charles Willson Peale, the leading portrait painter of the American colonies. Under his father's tutelage, he began painting at the young age of 8. Like his father, he primarily worked as a portraitist, and at the age of just 17, he was privileged enough to paint a portrait of Washington from life. From this life portrait, he composed his famed Senatorial Portrait of Washington, which now hangs in the Vice President's office in the Senate.

During the height of his career in the early 19th century, Peale was among the most respected and successful artists in the United States, gaining renown as a portrait painter due to his brilliant technical ability. In addition to his portraits, Peale painted both history paintings and landscapes such as the present work. Today, his paintings can by found in the Art Institute of Chicago, the National Portrait Gallery (Washington D.C.), the National Portrait Gallery (London), the Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York), and the National Gallery of Art (Washington D.C.), among many others.

Circa 1831

Canvas: 18 1/4" high x 24 1/4" wide
Frame: 28 1/4" high x 34 1/8" wide

Exhibited:
American Romantic Paintings of the 18th and 19th Centuries from the Collection of Lee B. Anderson, Lyman Allyn Museum, New London, Connecticut, 1961, no. 61
Three Centuries of Niagara Falls, Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, New York, 1964, no. 44

References:
Complete List of American and European Drawings, Paintings, and Watercolors in the Collection of the Lyman Allyn Museum, New London, Connecticut, 1960, p. 36
Paintings & Antiques: The New Townhouse of Lee B. Anderson, Antiques, 1961, B. Snow, pp. 442-44 (illustrated)
The American Art Journal, vol. 1, no. 2, 1969, p. 26 (illustrated)

Provenance:
The artist's estate, 1860
Thomas and Sons, Auctioneers, Philadelphia, 1862, Catalogue of Valuable Original Paintings by the Late Rembrandt Peale, no. 50
Allan Gerdau
Lyman Allyn Museum, Connecticut, 1957
Lee B. Anderson, New York, 1961
specifications
Period: 1816-1918
Origin:Other
Subject:Landscape
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