Thomas Cole: The Artist as Architect
At the height of his career as the leader of the Hudson River School of American landscape painting, Thomas Cole listed himself in the New York City Directory as an architect. Why would this renowned painter, who had never before designed a building, advertise himself as such?
The importance of Cole’s paintings and the significance of his essays, poems, and philosophy are well established, yet an analysis of his architectural endeavors and their impact on his painting has not been undertaken—until now. In celebration of the recreation of the artist’s self-designed Italianate studio at Cedar Grove in Catskill, New York, now the Thomas Cole National Historic Site, this book focuses on Cole’s architectural interests through architectural elements found in his paintings and drawings as well as in his realized and visionary projects, expanding our understanding of the breadth of his talents and interests.
An essay by noted art historian Annette Blaugrund and a contribution by Franklin Kelly, illustrated with Cole’s famous works, sketches, and architectural renderings, reveal an unexplored, yet fascinating, aspect of the career of this beloved artist—and thus, a crucial moment in the development of the Hudson River School and American art.
Published to coincide with the exhibition “Thomas Cole: The Artist as Architect” at the Thomas Cole National Historic Site and travelling to the Columbus Art Museum, the book adds a new dimension to scholarship on the artist.
Hardcover. 120 pages. 8.4 x 0.7 x 10.3 inches