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The Rapids Above Niagara

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Thomas Moran, American, (1837–1926)
The Rapids Above Niagara, 1886
Ink on paper
8 in. x 6 in. (20.32 cm x 15.24 cm)

Object Type: Print
Technique: Etching
Credit Line: Purchase, Scripps Collectors' Circle
Accession Number: 2012.2.12

The Hudson River School was America’s first landscape painting movement. Moran’s etchings here are representative of those works: the American countryside intrigues and excites while still presenting a sublime image both of God’s fearsome creation and the young nation’s possibilities. Moran’s work rarely took place on the Hudson—he was part of the so–called Rocky Mountain School, a Western extension of the work done by East Coast painters. He, like many of his colleagues in the Hudson River School, did not begin his career with painting, but with etchings and print graphics, a passion that he imparted to his wife, Mary Nimmo Moran. Here, Moran shows his talent for depicting the frightening power of nature: not only does Niagara swell with violent rapids, but it crashes around a felled tree.

David Kuhio Ahia, PO ’18
Getty Multicultural Undergraduate Intern

signed in pencil; the number, 2, in the upper lefthand corner

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