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Old Faithful

by Albert Bierstadt

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Old Faithful - Description

Old Faithful is German-American landscape and Romantic painter Albert Bierstadt’s depiction of the famous geyser in Wyoming’s Yellowstone National Park. Bierstadt (1836-1912) painted the geyser during his time spent perfecting his craft amongst those associated with the Rocky Mountain School. This painting, a work of oil on canvas mounted panel, hangs as a monument to western American expansion as one of the many masterpieces completed throughout Bierstadt’s expeditions. Unlike many of Bierstadt’s typically larger works, this painting is small with a dimensions of twenty and one quarter inches by twenty eight and one half inches. Its color, laden with the rich and creamy overtones of white and brown sit comfortably against a dark forest edge so common to Bierstadt’s work. Notice the sharp juxtaposition of color between the white wall of water and a sky laden with grey and blue. This painting, like many others by Bierstadt puts the viewer on the edge of a forest overlooking a body of water. The effect puts the small coast at the forefront of a much larger forest seeming to wrap around the observer and thus casting it into the work so that they too might embrace the image as the artist once did whence gazing upon the erupting geyser. The painting is divided in several parts by diagonal lines extending across the central visual plane, below the geyser itself. What is created is a strong middle ground of water and beyond that a perch for the geyser to sit upon. Bierstadt’s style of placing the subject close to the center of an immaculately reconstructed landscape filled with pristine detail given to every last shadow and branch is apparent in Old Faithful.

Painting Details

Artwork Name: Old Faithful

Original Artist: Salvador Dali
Subject: American Landscape
Medium: 100% Hand-painted on Canvas
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