Thomas Moran - An Autumn Afternoon
Thomas Moran (1837-1926), American
An Autumn Afternoon, 1878
OIL ON PANEL, 31 ½ x 19 ½ inches
Gift of Mrs. Theodora Willard Best
A pioneering landscapist of the American west whose fame rivaled even that of Albert Bierstadt, Thomas Moran received international attention and admiration for his portrayals of the Grand Canyon and Yellowstone. His art and writings expanded awareness of the treasures of the western landscape and the need for their protection from commercial exploitation.
An Autumn Afternoon depicts a quieter, though no less expressive, phase of Moran's art. Painted at the height of Moran's acclaim as a western artist, the work could as easily depict an eastern forest interior as a western one. The scene is heavy with dark, brooding power, an effect that may result more from darkening of the artist's pigments than was his original intention.