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Artist
William Merritt Chase
Title
October
Date
c. 1902
Medium
pastel on primed, lightweight canvas on Masonite
Dimensions
Canvas: 16 7/8 × 23 3/16 inches (42.9 × 58.9 cm)
Tags
Drawing
Credit Line
Museum purchase.
Accession Number
1917.2
William Merritt Chase was a critical figure in the development of impressionist painting in America. An influential art instructor as well as a practicing artist, he was an early proponent of painting outdoors, or en plein air, as the French impressionists did. This philosophy informed his teachings at the summer school he founded in Shinnecock Hills on the eastern end of Long Island, where October was created. This pastel depicts two tiny figures, possibly Chase’s daughters, against an expansive landscape that is flat and treeless, with scruffy patches of sea grass and small blue pools of water.