The above painting is not actually from the last couple of years but it is in the late style and I wanted to include it. Because of his increasing age and frailty, Inness, ever wandering first visits Florida in 1890. Then he moves there, to Tarpon springs. When we think of Florida today , it is a land that has been developed and is familiar and rather ordinary. In Inness'es day it was before the boom development and it must have been pretty primitive in general. Tarpon springs was home to the American sponge diving industry and is on the bayous and marshes facing the Gulf of Mexico.
I think it must have been difficult for Inness to adjust to the new scenery. After a life time of sturdy oaks and broad meadows Florida must have been a shock. The sunsets were good though, and he seems to have made do. I personally feel that the Florida paintings are not his best but I think this next, abstract one is good though. It is called, home of the Heron,
I think that is the little guy in the middle there. Does this picture look like Inness is channeling Whistler to you? It does to me.
Here is another of the Florida paintings. It is deeply mysterious and highly arranged looking.
In 1894 Inness wanders once more and with his son by his side, dies at Bridge of Allan, Scotland. His last words upon seeing a sunset, were, "My God,Oh, how beautiful"
This concludes our epic journey through the life and art of George Inness, please check to make sure you have your personal items with you as you disembark. I will return to this outline of American landscape painting but I think I will take a little detour for a few posts and allow you to decompress. I will return to the art historical posts in about a week.
Images provided by artrenewal.org, Americas largest online museum, and a great resource for anyone who wants to see great painting.