The Golden Hour

The Golden Hour

1865

Samuel Palmer

(British, 1805-1881)

Watercolor and gouache with graphite and scraping

Support: London Board

Sheet: 25.6 x 35.4 cm (10 1/16 x 13 15/16 in.)

The Severance and Greta Millikin Purchase Fund 2009.3

Catalogue raisonné: Lister cat. no. 646 p. 203

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Description

Inspired by William Blake, Palmer developed a personal and emotionally charged style of landscape painting that celebrated nature as the product of divine creation. This watercolor of a spectacularly colorful sunset over the hills of Surrey was painted by Palmer toward the end of his life. An autumn sky heavy with rows of cumulus clouds shimmers in a pattern of pink and amethyst, as slivers of golden light emanate from the setting sun. The idyllic landscape is an elegy not only to a passing day, but to the brevity of life itself.

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