dreamscape

Dreamscapes. They may appear unexpectedly, like passages of dream breaking through the more mundane course of a work. The romantic movement in its revolt against the desiccating official painting, was an emotionalized response that varied from the lyric to the violent…

One American of the early romantic spirit was Washington Allston, and though sometimes forced and pretentious his bent for visionary expression is often compellingly found within what he considered minor works. In the 1830′s, in America, Alston created spontaneously, without being aware that he was doing so, a picture with the true quality of a dream. A dream within reality.

---Landscape, American Scenery: Time, Afternoon, with a Southwest Haze     1835     Washington Allston, American, 1779–1843 ---click image for source...

—Landscape, American Scenery: Time, Afternoon, with a Southwest Haze
1835
Washington Allston, American, 1779–1843
—click image for source…

Allston’s factual title, Landscape, American Scenery: Time, Afternoon, with a Southwest Haze belied the evidence of the picture itself in which he was painting from some deep inner experience. The picture has little to do with one time or one place: instead, it is some sort of golden otherworld, a vision of the isolation of the human spirit in a region beyond time and beyond place, a common denominator that can connect Bruegel’s Hunters in the Snow with this work.

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