Feb 7, 2013

The Spinach Tree

The Spinach Tree


William Sommer

(American, 1867–1949)


Sheet: 39.4 x 50.8 cm (15 1/2 x 20 in.)

Gift of Dr. and Mrs. Theodor W. Braasch 1961.324



Although many American artists abandoned avant-garde art after 1918, Sommer continued to exaggerate form and color for emotional effect. This watercolor was likely inspired by his observations of rural life around his home in the Cuyahoga Valley. Although the site appears recognizable, his principal concern was creating lyrical designs that convey his inner thoughts and emotions. Like Charles Burchfield, his favorite motifs included suns, moons, and other cosmic forces that, according to ancient mythology, govern human destiny.

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