Jasper Francis Cropsey (1823-1900)
Property of the Saint Louis Art Museum, Sold to Benefit the Acquisitions Fund
Jasper Francis Cropsey (1823-1900)

Torne Mountain, Rockland County, New York

Jasper Francis Cropsey (1823-1900)
Torne Mountain, Rockland County, New York
signed and dated 'J.F. Cropsey/1850' (lower left)
oil on canvas
23 x 40 in. (58.4 x 101.6 cm.)
Painted in 1850.
The artist.
American Art-Union, New York, acquired from the above, 1851.
Sale: American Art-Union, New York, 15-17 December 1852, lot 371, sold by the above.
J.B. Williams, acquired from the above.
Private collection, Southampton, New York.
The Old Print Shop, Inc., New York, 1949.
Charles D. Childs, Boston, Massachusetts, acquired from the above, 1950.
Acquired by the present owner from the above, 1950.
Artist's journal, March 14, 1851.
G.W. Curtis, "The Fine Arts: The National Academy of Design, II," New York Daily Tribune, April 26, 1851, p. 5.
"The Fine Arts," International Magazine of Literature, Art and Science, vol. 3, June 1, 1851, p. 327.
"Fine Arts," The Albion, October 11, 1851, p. 490 (as Tourn Mountain, Rockland County).
"American Art Union: Conclusion of Sale," New York Times, December 18, 1852, p. 6 (as Tourn Mountain).
Artist's journal, August 2, 1852.
S.G.W. Benjamin, Art in America: A Critical and Historical Sketch, New York, 1879, p. 74, illustrated (as High Torn, Rockland Lake).
S.G.W. Benjamin, "Fifty Years in American Art, 1828-1878," Harper's New Monthly Magazine, vol. 59, September 1879, p. 482, illustrated (as High Torn, Rockland Lake).
The St. Louis Art Museum: Handbook of the Collections, St. Louis, Missouri, 1975, p. 228, illustrated (as Eagle Cliff, New Hampshire).
W.S. Talbot, Jasper F. Cropsey, 1823-1900, New York, 1977, pp. 86-87, 286-87, 357-59, no. 51, fig. 46, illustrated (as High Torne Mountain, Rockland County, N.Y.).
C.H. Campbell, M.S. Blaine, New Hampshire Scenery: A Dictionary of Nineteenth-Century Artists of New Hampshire Mountain Landscapes, Canaan, New Hampshire, 1985, p. 42 (as Eagle Cliff, New Hampshire).
R.H. Saunders, "The Backwoods of America, 1858," American Paintings from the Manoogian Collection, Washington, D.C., 1989, p. 14n8 (as Eagle Cliff, New Hampshire).
N. Cacioppo, "Torne Valley Inspired 19th-Century Artists," Journal News, June 24, 2001, p. 3B.
K.W. Maddox, "Cropsey's Paintings of Torne: A Legendary Mountain Worthy of a Painter's Pencil," OCHS Journal, vol. 30, November 1, 2001, pp. 36-37, 41-43, illustrated (as Tourn Mountain, Rockland County, N.Y.).
J. Updike, "O Beautiful for Spacious Skies," Still Looking: Essays on American Art, New York, 2006, p. 32.
K. Sharp, Poetic Journey: American Paintings from the Grey Collection, New Britain, Connecticut, 2007, p. 15.
A.M. Speiser, ed., Jasper Francis Cropsey, Catalogue Raisonné: Works in Oil, vol. 1, Hastings-on-Hudson, New York, 2013, pp. 91-93, 109, 117, no. 164, illustrated.
New York, National Academy of Design, 25th Annual Exhibition, April 15-July 6, 1851, no. 369 (as The Towrn [sic], Rockland County).
Valparaiso, Indiana, Valparaiso University, Sloan Galleries of American Painting, Scenic Beauty: Junius R. Sloan and the Hudson River School of Painting, September 27-December 12, 1976.
London, Tate Britain; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts; Minneapolis, Minnesota, Minneapolis Institute of Arts, American Sublime: Landscape Painting in the United States, 1820-1880, February 21-November 17, 2002, pp. 82-83, no. 7, illustrated (as High Torne Mountain, Rockland County, New York).

Lot Essay

Kenneth W. Maddox writes, "In the 19th century, the Torne Mountain area was celebrated for both its beauty and historical associations...Cropsey described in his journal on September 14, 1846, what may have been his only ascent of the mountain: 'One afternoon we...left the house at 3 on an excursion to the peak of the Tourn [sic] Mountain. We had a long and toilsome walk in ascending, and another equally so in returning...The view from the mountain is very extensive. It is said that from here Gen. Washington watched the motions of the armies during some of those Revolutionary struggles that passed off in contention of the Hudson River.'" (Jasper Francis Cropsey, Catalogue Raisonné: Works in Oil, vol. 1, Hastings-on-Hudson, New York, 2013, pp. 92-93)

When the present work was exhibited at the National Academy in 1851, George W. Curtis of the New York Daily Tribune praised, "The bold, black cliff rising suddenly and sheer against the cool quiet of the distant sky, and stretching into the somber massiveness of the storm-cloud over it, is very forcible and fine. There is here a variety of effect, without the slightest monotony or poverty of detail...There is an extreme poetic beauty in this little picture..." When exhibited at the American Art-Union later that year, the painting was further exalted by The Albion as "the best picture which we have seen from his easel." (as quoted in Jasper Francis Cropsey, Catalogue Raisonné: Works in Oil, p. 93)

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