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CHILDE HASSAM

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A NEW YORK BLIZZARD, ABOUT 1890

About the Artwork

A New York Blizzard reiterates motifs that had appeared even in Hassam’s earliest Boston scenes. Figures are challenged by, but do not suffer in the snow, which Hassam often depicted to soften sharp edges of buildings and muffle urban clatter. A nostalgic note is provided by the prominent gas lamp, a vestige of older technology that would soon give way to electricity. The monochromatic triad of silhouetted black coats and umbrellas, white snow, and gray paper suggests Hassam’s interest in flat pattern and design, which accords with his selective — not journalistic — interpretation of “his own time.”

Source: H. Barbara Weinberg, "A New York Blizzard," in Eye of the Beholder, edited by Alan Chong et al. (Boston: ISGM and Beacon Press, 2003): 211

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