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Church Bells Ringing, Rainy Winter Night, No. 2

Church Bells Ringing, Rainy Winter Night, No. 2

1917

Charles Burchfield

(American, 1893-1967)

Graphite on two sheets of butt-joined wove paper

32.1 x 18.6 cm (12 5/8 x 7 5/16 in.)

Norman O. Stone and Ella A. Stone Memorial Fund 1953.430

Fun Fact

Rather than working on a single sheet, Burchfield joined two pieces of paper to make this drawing.

Description

This drawing is the second study for Charles Burchfield's Church Bells Ringing, Rainy Winter Night, which he considered the most important drawing of his "golden year." Here, the artist sketched the composition in graphite, attempting to record the spire of Salem’s Baptist church (since destroyed by fire) rising up between two houses. Burchfield hoped to express his powerful childhood fear of the bell’s ominous ring—which he described as “a dull roar . . . dying slowly & with a growl.”

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