DC Museum Marathon: Totally Sublime at the Smithsonian American Art Museum

DSC_0824DSC_0810While I’m still anxiously waiting for my carpal tunnel syndrome  to be vanquished completely, I thought I’d start sharing some of the photos from my amazing trip to Washington, DC: starting with incredible Hudson River School (& beyond!) landscapes from the Smithsonian American Art Museum.

Until I regain my full typing stamina, these unbelievably beautiful paintings will have to tell the story for me–but hey, if your average picture is worth at least a thousand words, I’d say these works of art are more on the exchange scale of a million.


This absolutely stunning Bierstadt (Among the Sierra Nevada, California) nearly brought me to tears. I couldn’t believe a human hand could have possibly created such a vibrant, thrilling, living world with just pigment and canvas. The best part about this landscape is that it truly is a little microcosm that doesn’t exist: it blends together the American West with recognizable European topography. (In other words, we sure don’t get Matterhorns like that ’round these parts…)




Shipwrecks, arctic twilights, and the Northern Lights? It’s like this painting was made just for me!


I can’t get over how delicate and detailed these lace motifs are. This dress is giving Ter Borch (widely known as the gown-painting king of Western art) a run for his money!


I’ve always dreamed of seeing Thomas Cole’s The Subsiding of the Waters of the Deluge: ignoring its Biblical context, it makes me imagine some foreign, water-bound planet, empty but for that single flat boat braving the waters.


Thomas Moran’s monumental paintings of Yellowstone and other great natural resources were probably my second favorite–who doesn’t love a painting of canyons that’s taller than you are?–but still can’t quite hold a candle to Bierstadt’s Sierra Nevada fantasy…


2 thoughts on “DC Museum Marathon: Totally Sublime at the Smithsonian American Art Museum

  1. Kas October 24, 2015 / 10:10 pm

    Wow! Those painting are just WOW! I imagine it was exciting to be able to see them in person. Glad to hear you are on the mend! Take care!

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