This handsome and scholarly exhibition catalogue for a show at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the National Gallery explores the life and work of Thomas Cole (1801-1848), arguably the greatest American landscape artist of his generation.
The book and the show that it accompanies is the first to consider Cole's oeuvre in an international context. The book explores how Cole was influenced by the major British landscape painters of the age, including J.M.W. Turner and John Constable. The authors argue that Cole's passion for the American wilderness and his horror of the industrial revolution in Britain led him to create works that offer a distinctive response to the economic and ecological changes underway in the States. This book also discusses Cole's influence on later artists, from Frederic Edwin Church to Ed Ruscha.