Artwork of the Week: June 21, 2021
William Wendt (1865-1946), Canyon Stream, 1928, oil on canvas, 20 1/2 x 24 1/2 inches. Brigham Young University Museum of Art, gift of David K. Harmon, LaFaye Steed Harmon, A. Merlin Steed and Fanny Alice Wilcox Steed, 2019.
German-born artist William Wendt emigrated to America at age 15 and worked as a furniture maker and commercial painter in Chicago prior to entering art school. Wendt first visited California in 1894 and relocated there permanently in 1906. He remained endlessly fascinated by the Golden State’s diverse terrain and atmospheric light. Canyon Stream evokes the cool respite of mountain shade and flowing spring water. Created later in Wendt’s career, it shows a shift from more precise realism towards geometric forms and bolder colors in the highlights and shadows. The Museum owns two paintings by Wendt, donated by the Steed Family. The artist became a good friend of the Steeds and helped them create their art collection. This later oil painting was
recently gifted by the Steed’s grandchildren, who had kept the work in the family.