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Tropical Landscape, South America


Norton Bush (American, 1834 - 1894)

Just as the cultures of the East captured the popular imagination in the final quarter of the 19th century, so did the tropics. Frederic Church’s tremendously successful monumental paintings of the Andes Mountains played a significant role in the development of this interest, inspiring many of his peers to expand their repertoire of subjects.

Hermann Herzog was one of the first American artists to feature the Florida everglades in his art. In scenes such as In the Everglades he sought to capture not only the flora and fauna of the area, but also the hushed, almost magical feeling that one might experience in this untrammeled wilderness.

Samuel Marsden Brookes, on the other hand, reduced the landscape to a background element in his Tropical Still Life, choosing instead to focus his attention on the exotic delicacies that were imported from warmer climates. Brookes’ paintings are noteworthy for their meticulous attention to detail. In this painting he has even included a small trompe-l'oeil (trick the eye) detail: a fly that appears to rest on the vase as well as on the surface of the painting.

oil paint, canvas

Measurements:    height: 10 inches    width: 12 inches    frame height: 16 inches    frame width: 18 inches

Gift of Dr. and Mrs. Henry C. Landon, III 2007.79

Not currently on view