Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Newburyport Meadows

Martin Johnson Heade (1819–1904)
ca. 1876–81
Oil on canvas
10 1/2 x 22 in. (26.7 x 55.9 cm)
Credit Line:
Purchase, Mrs. Samuel P. Reed Gift, Morris K. Jesup Fund, Maria DeWitt Jesup Fund, John Osgood and Elizabeth Amis Cameron Blanchard Memorial Fund and Gifts of Robert E. Tod and William Gedney Bunce, by exchange, 1985
Accession Number:
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 761
Although he kept a studio in the same building on Tenth Street in New York City as several members of the Hudson River School, Heade remained on the fringes of the movement, and that marginal position is reflected in the unusual subjects he preferred: not mountains, forests, and lakes but tidal marshes, from Massachusetts to New Jersey. They became an ideal stage, as here, for the transient weather effects that had originated in his earlier coastal storm paintings. He painted these wetlands for forty-five years, focusing on haystacks, water, and sky, without extraneous details. His minutely scaled renderings of nature’s climatic cycles may be understood as intimations of his own moods.
Signature: [on lower right corner]: M J Heade

Inscription: [on the back of stretcher]: Newburyport Meadows
Senator Stephen Dorsey, Washington, D. C. and New Mexico, from about 1872–1878; his son, Clayton Chauncey Dorsey, from 1897; his wife, Mrs. Clayton C. (Helen Montgomery) Dorsey, until 1951; her grandson, Clayton Dorsey Knowles, 1951–1959; David C. Knowles, Dorrit Knowles Morgan, and Sara M. Knowles, 1959–1985; with Coe Kerr Galleries, New York, 1985
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