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View of Cotopaxi

Ecuadorian landscape with people, palm trees, waterfall, and volcano in background.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • Ecuadorian landscape with people, palm trees, waterfall, and volcano in background.

Date:

1857

Artist:

Frederic Edwin Church
American, 1826–1900

About this artwork

View of Cotopaxi brings together in visual form scientific, religious, political, and cultural ideas in the mid-19th century. Inspired by German naturalist Alexander von Humboldt’s concept of ecological interconnectedness, Frederic Edwin Church traveled to South America to meticulously study the tropical landscape. The artist produced at least ten finished paintings of the Ecuadorian volcano, this one completed in his studio just before his second visit to the region. For Church and other Christian viewers, nature, with all its creative and destructive wonders, was evidence of divine power. The painting likewise reflected an imperialist vision, as US government officials eyed Latin America as a site for territorial expansion and conquest.

On View

Arts of the Americas, Gallery 171

Artist

Frederic Edwin Church

Title

View of Cotopaxi

Origin

United States

Date

1857

Medium

Oil on canvas

Inscriptions

Signed, lower right: "F. E. Church '57"

Dimensions

62.2 × 92.7 cm (24 1/2 × 36 1/2 in.)

Credit Line

Gift of Jennette Hamlin in memory of Mr. and Mrs. Louis Dana Webster

Reference Number

1919.753

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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