Frederic Edwin Church

Birth: 1826


Frederic Edwin Church (1826-1900) was an American landscape painter. He was born at Hartford, Connecticut, on the 4th of May 1826. He was a pupil of Thomas Cole at Catskill, New York, where his first pictures were painted. Developing unusual technical dexterity, Church from the beginning sought for his themes such marvels of nature as Niagara Falls, the Andes, and tropical forests—he visited South America in 1853 and 1857,—volcanoes in eruption, and icebergs, the beauties of which he portrayed with great skill in the management of light, color, and the phenomena of rainbow, mist and sunset, rendering these plausible and effective.

In their time these paintings awoke the wildest admiration and sold for extravagant prices, collectors in the United States and in Europe eagerly seeking them, though their vogue has now passed away. In 1849 Church was made a member of the National Academy of Design. His "Great Fall at Niagara" (1857) is in the Corcoran Art Gallery, Washington, D.C., and a large "Twilight" is in the Walters Gallery, Baltimore, Maryland. Among his other canvases are "Andes of Ecuador" (1855), "Heart of the Andes" (1859), "Cotopaxi" (1862), "Jerusalem" (1870), and "Morning in the Tropics" (1877). He died on the 7th of April 1900, at his house on the Hudson river above New York City, where he had lived and worked for many years. He was the most prominent member of the so-called "Hudson River School" of American artists.


1911 Encyclopædia Britannica, Volume 6. pg. 324.

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