Woodcutters in Windsor Great Park

Benjamin West (American, 1738-1820)

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Born in Pennsylvania, Benjamin West studied painting in Rome in his early twenties and moved to England in 1763, where he remained for the rest of his career. The setting for this landscape is the Queen's Lodge in the Great Park at Windsor, where woodcutters are shown making a clearing to provide a "view." Such vistas were an essential part of 18th-century English landscape design. The landscape was painted the same year West began work on a major cycle of decorations for the chapel at Windsor Castle.

Estate of Benjamin West;
sale at (George Robins, London) in 1829;{1}
purchased by Egerton (possibly Wilbraham Egerton of Tatton Park, Cheshire, England).{2}
(Newhouse Galleries, New York) in 1950;
Mr. and Mrs. Nicholas H. Noyes, Indianapolis, Indiana, in 1950;
given to the John Herron Art Institute, now the Indianapolis Museum of Art at Newfields, in 1950.

{1} George Robins, London, Historical Pictures, and other admired compositions: The works of the revered and highly-gifted painter, the late Benjamin West, Esq., 22-15, 1829, lot 152.
{2} An annotated copy of the auction catalogue lists the buyer’s name as “Egerton;” see Helmut von Erffa and Allen Staley, The paintings of Benjamin West, New Haven and London, 1986, no. 474 (ill.)

Object Information

artist
Benjamin West (American, 1738-1820)
creation date
1795
materials
oil on canvas
dimensions
26-1/2 x 35 in. (canvas)
35-1/2 x 43 -1/4 x 3-1/4 in. (framed)
mark descriptions
Signed and dated in brown paint at lower right: B. West . 1795
accession number
50.29
credit line
Gift of Mrs. Nicholas H. Noyes
copyright
Public Domain
collection
American Painting and Sculpture to 1945
colors

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