Thomas Cole (1801-1848)
Oil on canvas
Overall (canvas): 24 3/4 x 20 in. (62.9 x 50.8 cm) Frame: 34 3/4 x 29 3/4 x 2 in. (88.3 x 75.6 x 5.1 cm)
Huntington executed this portrait of his friend Cole in the early part of 1841, and it was shown at the annual exhibition of the National Academy of Design that spring, before Cole left New York for Europe. Thomas Cole had first journeyed up the Hudson River as a young man in the summer of 1825. In the Catskill Mountains he made sketches for paintings that not only launched his career, but also the Hudson River School. In 1836 Cole left New York City to settle permanentlly at Catskill, a village on the west side of the Hudson River and a prtal to teh popular mountain sketching and touring grounds. Daniel Huntington's appealing portrait of the artist in middle age at the height of his career was shown at the National Academy in 1841. Huntington wrote to Cole's wife, Maria in 1843: "I beg you will accept the portrait of Mr. Cole, which for your sake I could wish was the best likeness in the world. If it affords you as much pleasure as I enjoyed while painting it - I shall be quite satisfied."
"National Academy of Design," New York Express, May 13, 1841, n.p. Catalogue of American Portraits in The New-York Historical Society, New Haven: Yale University Press, Vol. 1, 1974, p. 155-6.
Purchase, The Louis Durr Fund
Due to ongoing research, information about this object is subject to change.