Childe Hassam, raised in the Boston area, learned wood engraving as a young man. Having proved his skills as a draftsman, he became an illustrator for popular magazines such as Harper’s and Scribner’s. His career blossomed, and he subsequently turned to watercolor and oil painting, working in the style of the French Impressionists, with whom he was well acquainted. After 1910, he turned his attention to making lithographs and etchings.
Hassam made many summer visits to Gloucester, on Cape Ann, north of Boston, and this lithograph documents a tree-lined street with few buildings. Today, buildings line both sides of Plum Street, and few trees remain. It is a short street that intersects Main Street and ends at the harbor. The lithographic medium allows artists great freedom in drawing on the stone, an advantage exploited by Hassam in this print. A preliminary drawing for the lithograph is in the collection of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.
Georgia Barnhill, 2014
nature; trees; houses; roads; people; figures; gates; sidewalks; shadows
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