(Earl A. Powell
Thomas Cole (1801-1848) is widely considered the founder of the popular Hudson River School of painting. Cole, who emigrated to the United States from England in 1819, awakened a passion for landscape that would characterize American painting throughout the 19th century and change the way Americans, and the world, viewed the young nation.
In a series of breathtaking canvases, painted principally in the Catskill Mountains, Cole portrayed vast spaces, awesome horizons, and vibrant color. Earl A. Powell III, director of the National Gallery of Art, Washington, traces Cole's development and explores the Romantic theories that guided his thinking and informed his vision. Superb color reproductions bring Cole's paintings to life, revealing the America that once was.