Surf at Ogunquit, Maine [Early Ocean Attempt], 1899
Oil on canvas
Initialed and inscribed on canvas edge, 'Early Ocean attempt 1899 / CHW'. Inscribed on canvas verso,' Unfinished sketch by C. H. Woodbury / property of E.W.P.' Provenance: Elizabeth W. Perkins, Woodbury's partner in the summer school and the executor of his estate. Surf at Ogunquit is one of Woodbury's earliest wave studies. He had just settled into the Maine village of Oqunquit where he would spend the next forty summers when he began to seriously address the motion of water and air. Woodbury, who painted on Boston's North Shore at Lynn and Swampscott, before his departure to Holland and France in 1890 returned with a vigor to begin painting the motion of wind and waves in Ogunquit, Maine. He tried to solve the problem of expressing the motion of elemental force on canvas.