Art/ Collection/ Art Object

The Beeches

Artist:
Asher Brown Durand (American, Jefferson, New Jersey 1796–1886 Maplewood, New Jersey)
Date:
1845
Medium:
Oil on canvas
Dimensions:
60 3/8 x 48 1/8 in. (153.4 x 122.2 cm)
Classification:
Paintings
Credit Line:
Bequest of Maria DeWitt Jesup, from the collection of her husband, Morris K. Jesup, 1914
Accession Number:
15.30.59
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 759
This work, featuring meticulously rendered beech and basswood trees, was painted for the New York collector Abraham M. Cozzens, then a member of the executive committee of the American Art-Union. The painting illustrates a new trend in the work of the Hudson River School, with its diminished emphasis on sublime drama and increased interest in naturalism and in the creation of a tranquil mood. Durand was influenced by the work of the English landscape painter John Constable, whose vertical formats and truth to nature he absorbed while visiting England in 1840. "The Beeches" resembles Constable's "The Cornfield" (National Gallery, London). This work is also the first one Durand based on a plein-air oil sketch, a technique the artist increasingly relied upon to reproduce accurately conditions of light and shade.
Related Objects

Sketchbook of Landscape and Figure Subjects

Artist: Asher Brown Durand (American, Jefferson, New Jersey 1796–1886 Maplewood, New Jersey) Date: 1796–1886 Medium: Drawings in graphite on off-white wove paper, bound in a green cardboard cover Accession: 33.176 On view in:Not on view

Female Figure (from Sketchbook)

Artist: Asher Brown Durand (American, Jefferson, New Jersey 1796–1886 Maplewood, New Jersey) Medium: Graphite on paper Accession: 33.176.8 On view in:Not on view

Landscape with Schoolhouse; Study of a Tree (from Sketchbook)

Artist: Asher Brown Durand (American, Jefferson, New Jersey 1796–1886 Maplewood, New Jersey) Medium: Graphite on off-white wove paper Accession: 33.176.9 verso On view in:Not on view

Landscape with Schoolhouse; Study of a Tree (from Sketchbook)

Artist: Asher Brown Durand (American, Jefferson, New Jersey 1796–1886 Maplewood, New Jersey) Medium: Graphite on off-white wove paper Accession: 33.176.10 recto On view in:Not on view

Seated Female Figure (from Sketchbook)

Artist: Asher Brown Durand (American, Jefferson, New Jersey 1796–1886 Maplewood, New Jersey) Medium: Graphite on paper Accession: 33.176.9 recto On view in:Not on view