James McDougal Hart (American/New York, 1828-1901) oil on canvas painting depicting cattle grazing along a shoreline with a figure resting nearby, and a background composed of lush green trees and coastal architecture casting reflections on the surface of the water, all under a hazy evening sky. Signed "J.M. Hart" lower edge. Housed in a period giltwood frame with repousse and bead course decoration under glass. Sight: 8 1/2" H x 15 1/2" W. Framed: 14 1/2" H x 21 1/2" W. Biography: Born in Kilmarnock, Scotland, James Hart was a leading figure of the second-generation Hudson River School painters and was known for idyllic landscapes, especially with cows. His family emigrated to Albany, New York in 1830. At age 15, Hart apprenticed to a sign and banner painter in Albany. Later he switched to portrait painting. At age 22, Hart went to Germany and enrolled in the Dusseldorf Art Academy for three years and returned to Albany where he opened a studio, taught, and painted until 1857 when he established a studio in New York City. There, members of the newly rich, post-Civil War society were delighted with his serene, rural landscapes. In the 1840s and 1850s, he also painted panoramic, luminous landscapes in meticulous detail with figures including farmers and children. James McDougal Hart served as the Vice President for three years of the National Academy of Design. He was voted a full member in 1859.
The painting has an old lining. Some abrasion to the lower edge. No visible retouching. Frame with scattered losses.
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