Friday, May 13, 2011


Two Ladies in a Rowboat, 38 x 28 inches

Alfred Thomas Bircher (1837-1908) was a luminist and one of the last painters of the Hudson River School, one of the best-known schools in American art. With the advent of Modernism, the luminist style - and landscape painting in general - fell out of favor; however, in more recent times Bricher's work has seen a revival, and he is now recognised as one of the foremost marine painters of the 19th century.
While storm-whipped waves provide a seascape with drama, the more tranquil moods of the sea give scope for the luminist exploration of light reflecting on the surface of water.
Bricher painted many of these calm, reflective coastal scenes. He often contrasts the smooth, mirror-like surface of the water with rugged cliffs and highly textured clouds. 
As a lover of maritime life and the sea he purchased a home in the 1890s close to the sea in the New Dorp section of Staten Island where he had views of the Atlantic Ocean and Raritan Bay. He lived and painted at the shore in New Dorp until his death in 1908.


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