Sunday, March 19, 2017

The Scene from Sunset Hill

In a previous blog we introduced three versions of a single view of Mount Washington from Sunset Hill in North Conway, now the location of the Red Jacket Hotel.

I mentioned then that the scene had been enlarged for easy study and can be found on the stair hall leading down to the Henney History Room at the Conway Public Library.

Recently, the original Kensett painting from which the print was made was featured in two interesting exhibits at the Currier Museum in Manchester, NH and the Davis Museum at Wellesley College in Massachusetts. One great thing about the Currier show (below) was that you could compare the original painting, the Smillie print and the Currier and Ives version side by side.

At the Davis Museum they took another approach.

They hung the Kensett next to English painter John Constable’s “Dedham Lock and Mill.” As they say on their website this “pairing creates the enviable opportunity for close side-by-side analysis of the multivalent influences and philosophical convictions that informed British and American landscape painting in the 19th century.”

These exhibits show that contrasts and comparisons can provide unique and interesting perspectives on these views, especially when placed within their historical framework.

To learn more about the view and the viewpoint as well as the content and context for this scene from Sunset Hill contact us at the Conway Public Library’s Henney History Room and keep tuned into our forthcoming blogs as we continue to explore the
Sunset Hill vista

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