ALBERT PINKHAM RYDER,Vintage Art Masterpieces,Vintage Prints for Sale The Forest of Arden by ALBERT PINKHAM RYDER {American School}

The Forest of Arden by ALBERT PINKHAM RYDER {American School}

The Forest of Arden by {American School}


THE most poetic, and in the restricted sense, the most origmal of American
painters is Albert Ryder, born in New Bedford, Massachusetts. He was born
a Puritan and a Puritan he remained; but his pietistic inheritance was leav­
ened by gentleness and good will.

There was a pronounced strain of New
England transcendentalism in Ryder, but his spiritual quandaries were
humanized by healthy contacts with sturdy mechanics and seafaring men. As
independent in his own way as Thoreau, he

believed that he had a great work
to perform; and at an age when most boys were savages, he was paintmg from
nature and experimenting with color. When his family moved to New York
as a final stand against poverty, he came with them, in his early twenties, and
for ten years was supported by his brother.

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New York afforded Ryder all that his soul desired. “A rain-tight roof,
frugal living, a box of colors, and God’s sunlight keep the soul attuned and
the body vigorous for one’s daily work,” he said.

He lived alone in an attic
room in Fifteenth Street from which, at rare intervals-mainly because it
took him so long to finish anything-he sold a canvas; and his income, once
he had found himself, was sufficient for his slender wants. He was a contented
painter, if ever one lived-admIttedly a dreamer refining and reworking his
conceptions with the patience of a cabinetmaker.

Again and again he painted
the sea, but always to emphasize the pitiable insignificance of man; and in his
most dramatic pieces-those of sinister waves, opaque as slate and crossed
with wan lights-he introduced small figures to sound the inescapable cry of

human anguish.

If Ryder was a dreamer, he was also a great designer who built his dreams

upon an objective foundation, investing New England landscapes and the sea,
which he had observed from infancy, with magical or supernatural qualities.
He was never abnormal or exotic, never stooped to nightmares or absurdities:
the path of his emotional journey lay along the horizon of the world in which
the reckless human comedy is played.

The more elusive states of the soul­
strange fears and dangers, premonitions of death, the mysterious power of
the sea, the intoxication of moonlight-absorbed his whole life. The Forest of
Arden, a subject twice painted, is his vision of_ the world beyond the world­
his invitation, expressed in marvelously composed irregularities of earth,
trees, and sky, to enter the enchanted land of the spirit.


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