Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Happy Birthday, Chauncey !

Chauncey Ryder, The Road to Raymond, 28x36"

Today, February 29th, marks the quadrennial birthday of American painter and etcher Chauncey Foster Ryder (1868-1949). 

Ryder is a master at contrasting solidly painted masses against his ever-lively sense of drawing. A good example is found in his almost calligraphic treatment of his signature trees.

But chief among his attractions for me is the incredibly subtle palette he employs. Pearlescent blues, mauves and violets are arrayed against a whole range of greens, from sage to silver, enlivening his surfaces with flickering light.

Ryder remains not as well-known as he should be. For the student, a study of his compositions and of his  color would be time well spent.
Take the opportunity to search out his work.

So today wish Chauncey a very Happy Birthday, and thank him for his lyrical evocations of the New England hills.

For more about Ryder:


  1. Nice post! I've always loved Chauncey's trees and now I know why. From now on, whenever my wife calls the trees in my paintings "scrawny," or "scraggly," as she has been known to do, I'm going to refer her to Mr. Ryder's "calligraphy." Happy birthday, Chaunce.

  2. Calligraphic treatment, simple compositional masses, using color to enliven surfaces with flickering light...this is art student gold right here...a thousand thank you's.