Melting Snow by Edward Redfield
Melting Snow by Edward Redfield Melting Snow by Edward Redfield Melting Snow by Edward Redfield Melting Snow by Edward Redfield
Melting Snow by Edward Redfield

Melting Snow by Edward Redfield

  • This impressive oil on canvas was composed by the great American artist Edward Redfield
  • The Pennsylvania Impressionist is celebrated for his unique style and winter scenes such as this
  • He captures the snowy banks along the Delaware Canal in the sleepy town of New Hope, Pennsylvania
  • A pioneering member of the New Hope School, Redfield and his works are highly celebrated
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Item No. 30-9181
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Edward Willis Redfield
1869-1965 | American

Melting Snow

Signed and dated "E.W. Redfield / 1908" (lower left)
Oil on canvas

As a pioneering member of the New Hope School of Pennsylvania Impressionists, Edward Redfield is among the most significant figures of American art from the late 19th and early 20th century. The artist is celebrated for his vigorously bold brushwork and energetic renderings of the Pennsylvania landscape, particularly his winter scenes. In the present work, he captures the snowy banks along the Delaware Canal in the sleepy town of New Hope, an area where Redfield spent most of his career. Painted in 1908, Melting Snow reflects the artists' impressive skill for capturing the ever-changing seasons in this picturesque and distinctly American region.

Though he painted year-round, it is his wintertime scenes for which Redfield is most renowned. He possessed the remarkable ability to reproduce the subtle tones and soft light of the snow-filled landscape on canvas, bringing color and a breath of fresh air to a winter's day. In fact, when he was just 22 years old in 1891, one of his winter landscapes was accepted by the French Salon - a great honor for both an American painter and one so young.

Melting Snow is an exceptional example of this artistic legacy. The lush, rich impasto on the surface of the canvas reveals Redfield's unique impressionist style, which was greatly influenced by the French master Claude Monet. It is compositionally similar to other works by the artist, particularly in the canal that flows through the center of the scene and its strong sense of perspective and depth. The melting snow, dotted along the canal banks and on the landscape in the distance, implies the inevitable coming of spring, while also lending the work a sense of quietude and serenity. Considering the setting and the season, it is also distinctly American, embodying the unique American vision that Redfield and the other Pennsylvania Impressionists propagated throughout their impressive output.

Born in Delaware in 1869, Redfield first studied to become an artist at the Spring Garden Institute and the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia before entering the Pennsylvania Academy of Art in 1887. He traveled abroad in 1889 along with his friend and fellow artist Robert Henri, studying at the Academie Julian in Paris under the Academic master William-Adolphe Bouguereau. After returning to the United States, he settled in Pennsylvania and began to paint prolifically, though it would not be until the beginning of the 20th century when he developed his distinctive Pennsylvania Impressionist style.

By 1907, he perfected his signature style, and began to receive numerous awards for his plein air compositions. With the exception of John Singer Sargent, Redfield is said to have won more prizes, awards and medals than any other American artist of the 20th century. Today, his works can be found in the Smithsonian American Art Museum (Washington D.C.), the Detroit Museum of Arts, the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, the Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York), and many others.

Dated 1908

Canvas: 37 7/8" high x 50 1/4" wide
Frame: 49 1/8" high x 61 1/2" wide

References:
New Hope for American Art: A Comprehensive Showing of Important 20th Century Painting From and Surrounding the New Hope Art Colony, New Jersey, 2005, by J.M. Alterman, p. 449 (illustrated)
specifications
Period: 1816-1918
Origin:America
Subject:Landscape
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