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Frederic Edwin Church
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    (May 4, 1826-April 7, 1900)
    Born in Hartford, Connecticut
    Member of the Hudson River School of landscape artists
    Paintings include 'Home by the Lake' (1852), 'Niagara' (1857), 'The Heart of the Andes' (1859), 'Twilight in the Wilderness' (1860), 'The Icebergs; (1861), 'Aurora Borealis' (1865), 'Morning in the Tropics' (1877) and 'Mediterranean Sea' (1882)
    Founding trustee of the Metropolitan Museum of Art (1869)
    His first trip to South America was financed by Cyrus Field who hoped his paintings would attract investors to Field's holdings on the continent.
    During his last two decades, he spent less time on painting than on redesigning his estate, Olana, into a Persian-inspired castle.
    His reputation declined to the point that when Harvard's Fogg Museum found one of his paintings in their basement during the early 1960s, they had trouble finding anyone willing to take it.
    When his 'Heart of the Andes' was displayed in New York City, 12,000 people came to see it (a record for a single-painting exhibition) and police were needed to maintain order.
    His oldest son and daughter died in a diphtheria epidemic (1865).
    Because of rheumatoid arthritis, he eventually had to switch to painting with his left hand.
    He was described by critic Robert Hughes as 'the most spectacular practitioner of the 19th century sublime.'

Credit: C. Fishel

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