The content on this page is aggregated and is not affiliated with the artist.
Asher Brown Durand (Aug. 21, 1796 – Sept. 17, 1886); American painter of the Hudson River School.
...Durand is remembered particularly for his detailed portrayals of trees, rocks, and foliage. He was an advocate for drawing directly from nature with as much realism as possible. Durand wrote, "Let [the artist] scrupulously accept whatever [nature] presents him until he shall, in a degree, have become intimate with her infinity...never let him profane her sacredness by a willful departure from truth."
The acknowledged dean of American landscape painters following the death of Thomas Cole, Asher Brown Durand exemplified the fresh ideal of naturalism for the second-generation painters that came to be called the Hudson River School. Born in Jefferson Village (now Maplewood), New Jersey, Durand first worked for his father, a watchmaker and silversmith, before apprenticing with the engraver Peter Maverick in Newark, from 1812-17. In the latter year, he became Maverick’s associate and established and led the firm’s New York City branch until 1820, when he left following a dispute with Maverick over Durand’s independent acceptance of a commission from John Trumbull to engrave his famous painting, The Declaration of Independence. Completed in 1823, the engraving significantly boosted Durand’s standing in the New York art world, and in 1825 he joined with Samuel F. B. Morse, Thomas Cole, William Sydney Mount, and others in founding the New-York Drawing Association, soon to be called the National Academy of Design; shortly after, he was elected to the Lunch Club, ancestor of the Bread and Cheese Club, the Sketch Club, and the Century Association. Under the influence of his fellow artists, Durand in the 1830s turned more and more to painting, producing genre and portraits. The latter included a series of the American presidents commissioned by the liberal New York...