Art of the American West
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Thomas Hill (American, 1829–1908),
Sierra Nevadas , 1879
oil on canvas, 18 x 30 in.; 45.72 x 76.2 cm
Gift of E. A. Kingman, 1956.333

The premier landscape artist in nineteenth-century California, Hill did not move permanently to his adopted state until he was in his forties. For three decades thereafter he painted majestic vistas of the Sierras and the Pacific coast. He maintained a cabin in the mountains and traveled widely, directly experiencing the scenic grandeur he depicted, although — like Bierstadt, Moran, and other Western artists of the period — it was more likely Hill’s intent to interpret nature, not to replicate it.

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