Artwork of the Week: May 17, 2021
Edward W. Redfield (1869-1965), The Valley, c.1924, oil on canvas, 50 1/2 x 56 3/8 inches. Brigham Young University Museum of Art, gift of Richard and Nadene Oliver.
Edward Redfield was one of the most prominent American Impressionists associated with an art colony located in New Hope, Pennsylvania. Although he studied at the École des Beaux-Arts under William-Adolphe Bouguereau, one of the premier academic painters of the 19th century, Redfield’s mature style owed more to Monet and the Impressionists, whose energetic brushstroke he witnessed first-hand in France. At a time when many well-known American painters, such as the Ashcan School artists in New York, were celebrating the expanding urban areas of the country, other artists retreated to more secluded locations. Here, the vibrant palette and lively application of paint somewhat obscure the houses that line the banks of this river. It is as though the artist was seeking for a space where people and the landscape existed in a natural harmony; trees, rivers, and humble human constructions folded together in reverent simplicity.