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Oil on canvas
Framed: 211 x 283 x 4 cm (83 1/16 x 111 7/16 x 1 9/16 in.); Unframed: 208.3 x 279.4 cm (82 x 110 in.)
Contemporary Collection of The Cleveland Museum of Art 1968.3
Fairfield Porter’s older brother Eliot was an accomplished nature photographer.
A restful scene on a hot summer day in 1954 inspired Fairfield Porter to sketch the original composition for this painting. He and his wife Anne were visiting painter Jane Freilicher and her husband in Nyack, New York, a town on the Hudson River, north of Manhattan. The two women are depicted under an old ash tree-Jane painting a landscape and Anne reading a book by the English writer Ronald Firbank (1886-1926). The following winter, Porter made a small painting from the sketch. This canvas evolved twelve years later, as the artist considered improving the smaller version. Since he could no longer remember the exact details and colors of the original scene, he decided to render the forms in broad, flat areas that define only the essential shapes.
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