Venus and Adonis

byBryson Burroughs

Date:
1933
Type; Media:
Painting; Oil on canvas
Dimensions:
24 X 36 inches
Signature:
signed and dated lower right
Description:

Signed and dated lower right: "BRYSON BURROUGHS / 1933 / DOGTOWN COMMON". Inscribed in pencil on stretcher, "July 4, 1933 / CREMNITZ WHH" Provenance: Bryson Burroughs (d. 1934) to his widow Louise Burroughs (d. 1980) to Bryson Burroughs's daughter-Betty Burroughs Marsh Woodhouse (d. 1988) to Lilla Woodhouse (Mrs. Brierly S. Woodhouse, son of Betty Woodhouse, d. 1985) to Virginia von Schlegell (agent) to Childs Gallery. Exhibited: Painting Summer in New England, Peabody Essex Museum, Massachusetts 2006. Published: Painting Summer in New England, Peabody Essex Museum, Massachusetts 2006: No. 77 in catalogue. Burroughs often painted a series of pieces with a common theme. Throughout his career, Burroughs executed a group of paintings illustrating the myth of Venus and Adonis. In this particular work Venus appears before Adonis who sits atop his horse ready to depart for a hunt. This scene portrays the undying love that Venus had for the mortal prince, Adonis. In addition, this painting exemplifies Burroughs's tendency to use a local landscape setting that reflects the unique beauty of his native New England. He has here chosen the well-known artists' site of Dogtown Common, which is located in the center of Cape Ann in Massachusetts, for the foreground and juxtaposed it with a distant landscape of the Camden Hills from the island of North Haven in Maine. He makes a small visual pun with the inclusion of the foxhounds over the inscription "Dogtown Common."

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