Image of painting titled  (Navajo man Riding into the Sunset)

Experiencing Nature

“In every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks" John Muir

Artworks in this gallery depict the human figure in relation to, and intertwined with, nature and the landscape.  Americans' interest in experiencing nature was widely expressed in nineteenth century art and literature.  Nature inspired the Hudson River School artists to explore their country and paint realistic and spiritual scenes of the American landscape.

Nature also inspired many of that century's great writers, including Henry David Thoreau, Emily Dickinson, Ralph Waldo Emerson, and Walt Whitman.  These writers, influenced by Transcendentalism, experienced a natural world that was highly spiritual.  The divine could be experienced through nature.  

The portraits of Martha Washington and of the Nez Perce woman face forward, gazing directly at the viewer from within the landscape.  Both are enveloped in nature.  The two children from Natchez are in repose and are surrounded by dark undergrowth and trees.  In these works, nature and vegetation are a significant and dominating presence that frame the individuals depicted.


Image of painting titled And The Sun Went Down (Arizona Desert)

Image of painting titled Men and Boys Herding Town Horses