Incomparable Scenery
Comparative Views in the White Mountains

The Belknap Mill Society
Sunday, August 15, 1999 through Thursday, September 30, 1999
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Mount Kearsarge

Kearsarge_Ordway.jpg (19692 bytes) Kearsarge_Champney.jpg (30965 bytes) Kearsarge_Wilson.jpg (27908 bytes)
Alfred T. Ordway Benjamin Champney E. T. Wilson

Mount Kearsarge from North Conway
Oil on artist's board, 8.5" x 13"

Mount Kearsarge
Oil on canvas, 10" x 14"

Mount Kearsarge from North Conway
Oil on canvas, 18" x 28"

[Click on the image for an enlargement]

A prominent mountain near North Conway, Mount Kearsarge was a favorite subject of artists who gathered in that area. We have three excellent examples of paintings of Mount Kearsarge. Note the church spire in all three. You can imagine the different painters placing their easels within feet of each other!

While Champney and Ordway chose the green palette of summer, Wilson introduced the colors of early fall. Ordway used the shadows of clouds on the terrain to emphasize the mountain. Wilson’s clouds, appearing to stream from the mountain itself, draw your eye to the peak. The loose brush strokes in Champney's painting indicate this is one of his later works. Ordway is more precise with his brush strokes in this painting because of its small size. Simple dots of color effectively portray the flowers and lily pads.

Although the fence is slightly different in each, the major elements of the scene, including the lily pads, are present in all three compositions. Most of the mid-19th century White Mountain landscape painters were faithful to the topography, and these are fine examples of this accuracy.

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