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Moonlight Landscape

Moonlight Landscape

Artist: Joseph Wright of Derby (British, 1734 – 1797)

Date: c. 1785
Medium: Oil on canvas
Frame: 32 7/8 × 37 5/8 × 1 15/16 in. (83.5 × 95.5 × 5 cm)
Image: 24 5/8 × 29 3/4 in. (62.5 × 75.5 cm)
Credit Line: Museum purchase, 1972
Object number: SN906
On View: Art Museum Gallery 16
About this ObjectWright was fascinated by light, both natural and artificial, and made it the subject of many of his paintings. This scene is based on careful observation; note especially the translucent clouds at upper left, the gradations of filtered color in the sky, and the light falling on the large tree at right. Yet it is also a skillful invention: we know the moon will only remain behind the bridge for a brief moment, and this heightens the painting’s sense of quiet drama and wonder.
Purchased by The John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art, September 1972 from David David Inc., Philadelphia
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