The golden red glow of the setting sun permeates throughout this ethereal composition by the great Hudson River School painter Louis Rémy Mignot. Sunset on Lake George brilliantly showcases Mignot’s mastery of both light and atmosphere. The blazing sky, comprising subtly graded tones from deep purple through oranges to dazzling yellow, is the most impressive element in this attention-demanding painting. With his subtle variations between light and shadow, Mignot’s composition reveals the alluring and haunting beauties of the unspoiled American landscape.
As a prominent member of the Hudson River School, Mignot sought out sprawling vistas and virgin landscapes such as this. The view of Lake George in northern New York reveals the quiet solemnity and repose that was typical of Mignot’s mature style. Like his friend and colleague Thomas Cole, Mignot possessed the innate ability to capture the atmospheric drama of a scene. With its softly blurred edges and intense red palette, Sunset on Lake George seems to reveal the essence of this place, while at the same time maintaining an air of mystery and the Sublime. It is precisely the type of composition that earned him such high praise during his lifetime, and that made the Hudson River School painters such artistic revolutionaries.
Born in 1831 in South Carolina, Louis Rémy Mignot was born to French parents of Huguenot descent. Both his French and southern heritages would influence his later artistic style, distinguishing him from other painters of the Hudson River School, particularly in his atmospheric effects. As a young painter, he travelled extensively, first to Europe for his artistic training, and later to Ecuador with his colleague Frederic Edwin Church. He first exhibited at the National Academy of Design in 1853, eventually becoming an academician. He died of smallpox at the young age of 39, cutting short a promising career. Today, his works can be found in the collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York), Brooklyn Museum, North Carolina Museum of Art, Detroit Institute of Arts, and the de Young Museum (San Francisco), among others.
Canvas: 16″ high x 24 1/8″ wide
Frame: 24 3/8″ high x 34 1/4″ wide