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Important Hudson River School Painters in Art History
Listed Alphabetically

Albert Bierstadt (1830 - 1902) American, Hudson River School
George Loring Brown (1814-1889) American, Hudson River School
Thomas Chambers (1808-1866) American, Hudson River School
Frederic Church (1826 - 1900) American, Hudson River School
Thomas Cole (1801 - 1848) American, Hudson River School
Jasper Francis Cropsey (1823-1900) American, Hudson River School 
Thomas Wilmer Dewing 1847-1919) American, Tonalist
Asher B. Durand (1796-1886) American, Hudson River School
Martin Johnson Heade 1819-1904) American, Hudson River School  
Hermann Herzog (1831-1932)  American, Hudson River School   
Thomas Hill (1829-1908)  American, Hudson River School
George Inness (1825 - 1894) American, Hudson River School
John Frederick Kensett (1816-1872) American, Hudson River School
Thomas Moran (1837-1926) American, Hudson River School

Description of The Hudson River School movement

Throughout the history of the United States, the American wilderness has been fundamentally important in creating a national identity. The Hudson River School was a mid-19th century American art movement founded by Thomas Cole in 1825. Using the river as inspiration, these painters were celebrated for their realistic depictions of the regions stunning and distinctive landscape. Their radiant, majestic style was influenced by European romanticism. The artists shared common design aesthetics uniting them as a school despite their distinctive styles. The painters focused on the American wilderness, particularly the Hudson River Valley as well as the Catskill Mountains and Adirondack Mountains. The paintings were spectacular and dramatic reflecting the wilderness environment. The artists moved their studios out of doors and sketched directly from nature focusing on the drama of light and shadow. Many paintings depict a rugged landscape, dramatic sunrise or ominous storm clouds brewing in the distance. The works were painstakingly detailed and celebrate Gods divine handiwork in nature.

The mid 1850s was a time of unprecedented development for the young nation, and the Hudson River painters depicted the vastness and beautify of a country proud of its natural resources. They embraced nature and showed a remarkable attention to detail within the natural landscape. This school popularized the idea of Manifest Destiny and came to symbolize American vitality, independence and nationalism. Today, works by the Hudson River school artists are treasured as the first uniquely American school of art and for their beauty and significance to art, history and culture.

Key Descriptive Words and Phrases associated with the Hudson River School- unspoiled nature, atmospheric lighting, primeval landscape, theatrical, Catskill, Berkshire, White Mountains, Walt Whitman, American Transcendentalists, spiritual transformation, dramatic instincts, large scale canvasses, Luminist, Romantic school, wilderness, New York, symbolic language, realism, Western Expansion and Manifest Destiny.


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