Thomas Chambers


(1807–c. 1865)
produced some of the most lively and decorative folk renditions of Hudson River School landscape painting in nineteenth-century America. Chambers was born inLondon but immigrated to New Orleans, where he filed a Declaration of Intention to become a citizen in 1832. He is listed as a painter in that city in 1834, thenspecifically as a landscape and marine painter in New York City from 1834 to 1840. Chambers lived in Boston from 1843 to 1851, then in Albany, New York, from1851 to 1857, with a possible sojourn in Boston from 1860 to 1861.Chambers’ body of work, numbering sixty-five oil- on-canvas paintings, includes a large number of stylized landscapes derived from published prints. One of Chambers’ favorite sources was the work of Englishman William Henry Bartlett, whose engraved landscapes were published in Nathaniel Parker Willis’s
AmericanScenery in
1840. Other subjects painted by Chambers include marine paintings depicting different types of sailing vessels in various harbors. In rendering scenery based on academic art sources, Chambers enlivened well-known images with bold color and a lively sense of visual rhythm. His
View of Cold Spring and Mount Taurus from Fort Putnam
(c. 1850) is one such landscape that exploits quintessenial compositional devices from Hudson River Landscape artists such as Asher B.Durand in combination with quirky and often exuberantly expressive embellishmentssuch as birds, contemporary houses and figures.
See also
Maritime Folk Art; Painting, American Folk
Chotner, Deborah, et al.
American Naive Paintings.
Washington, D.C., 1992.Rumford, Beatrix T., ed. |
American Folk Paintings: Paintings and Drawings Other Than Portraits from the Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Center,