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The Artist Looks at Nature

Painting of artist drawing on easel, green landscape, stone walls surround him.

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  • Painting of artist drawing on easel, green landscape, stone walls surround him.

Date:

1943

Artist:

Charles Sheeler
American, 1883–1965

About this artwork

The Artist Looks at Nature presents an imagined scene of rolling greenery, massive stone walls, stairs, and pathways. Contrary to its title, the artist, Charles Sheeler, depicted himself seated at an easel, ignoring the brightly lit landscape in front of him. Rather, the figure works intently on a monochromatic drawing of an antiquated stove, which is based on one of Sheeler’s own photographs from 1917. The self-portrait also relies upon an earlier photograph by the artist.

Here, Sheeler engaged in reconstructing his own artistic past—looking back at his work across media and reconfiguring it into something new and surreal in the present. Although the painting’s intent remains unknown, it is clear that Sheeler, as artist, catalyzed and shaped this visual journey.

Status

On View, Gallery 262

Department

Arts of the Americas

Artist

Charles Sheeler

Title

The Artist Looks at Nature

Place

United States (Artist's nationality)

Date

1943

Medium

Oil on canvas

Inscriptions

Inscribed lower right: Sheeler. 1943

Dimensions

53.3 × 45.7 cm (21 × 18 in.)

Credit Line

Gift of Society for Contemporary American Art

Reference Number

1944.32

Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email . Information about image downloads and licensing is available here.

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