Hudson River School 1985
| Image Notes
Perhaps Deem's commentary on the general use of the phrase "school of" is nowhere more apparent than in two paintings and the drawings he made on the theme of the Hudson River School. He first paid tribute to that great school of American landscape painting in the 1980s and continued to investigate the theme in the following decade. The generic school desks have now found their way onto what appears to be the veranda of a late-nineteenth-century American country house. In fact, the view from the porch (which is repeated in a sketch that rests on one of the desks) replicates the one seen from Olana, the magnificent hilltop mansion near Hudson, New York, that was designed by American architect Calvert Vaux (1824-93) for the great American landscape painter Frederic Edwin Church (1826-1900). The sweeping view of the Hudson River and the Catskill Mountains, shown both in the sketch and in the distance, is one that Church loved and that was the raison d'être for his placement of Olana. (David B. Dearinger, George Deem: The Art of Art History, The Boston Athenaeum, Boston, Massachusetts, 2012. pages 30-31).
| Artist's Notes
The view of the Hudson River in my 1985 painting The Hudson River School is the view from Olana, the house built in the 1870s by the painter Frederick Church (1826-1900) on a hill near the town of Hudson, New York. In 1995 I painted Hudson River School No. 2, again with the same view of the Hudson River but with a different porch architecture and a different arrangement of the school desks. The later painting has a horizontal format, 42 by 54 inches. (George Deem, September 5, 2001).
Evansville Museum of Arts and Science, Evansville, Indiana
Indiana State Museum, Indianapolis, Indiana